In 2019, Carrefour Belgium introduced a range of reusable and recyclable carrier bags made from marine waste. The retailer collaborated with Seaqual, an organisation that cleans up the oceans and seabed, to source the plastics needed.
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Based in the Danish capital Copenhagen, Veras operates several initiatives to reduce waste in the fashion sector by making it easy for everyone to swap and sell clothes. Veras is primarily an online webshop shipping to all Europe, where users can send in their own clothes. It also hosts weekly clothing markets for everyone to buy and sell clothing and has a flagship store in Copenhagen.
Complementing traditional mechanical recycling efforts, Plastic Energy has developed a patented Thermal Anaerobic Conversion (TAC) technology to convert end-of-life plastic waste into a new feedstock, called TACOIL, that can be used in the manufacturing of virgin-quality plastics suitable for food-grade packaging.
ReBlend develops textiles and textile products made from textiles that otherwise end up in incineration. Textiles made from recycled fibres offer a positive alternative for designers and companies. In collaboration with waste collectors, producers, designers, makers and visionaries, ReBlend organises a full supply chain from start to finish to accelerate a new ecosystem for circular textiles.
Niaga® and its partner future-proof everyday products by making sure materials don’t have to end up as waste. Ever. Niaga designs producted to be used again. It makes them healthier and recyclable.
“Staramaki” is a straw made of wheat. It is produced by a social cooperative KoinSep in Kilkis, northern Greece. The most widely produced local product wheat is used to create a viable eco-friendly alternative to single use plastic straws. At the same time they create employment opportunities and promote social cohesion, as well as local and regional development.
In 2020, the Czech bank ČSOB, in cooperation with IDEMIA, launched an eco-friendly recycled card to reduce the amount of virgin plastic which ends up in rubbish bins. By opting for IDEMIA’s eco-friendly product, ČSOB is the first bank in the Czech Republic to take a significant step towards addressing this ecological burden.
CIRAA is a company active in promoting circular economy principles and helping businesses ensure that their plans and projects abide by those principles.
The Flemish municipality of Sint-Amands has transformed an old shoe factory into the unique and sustainable multifunctional de Nestel community centre where residents and local associations can feel at home.
RE-sign has marketed an app matching up supply and demand for reclaimed construction materials.
The academic paper "Analysing European Union circular economy policies: words versus actions" comprehensively reviews and analyses the EU’s circular economy (CE) policies. Results show a dichotomy between words and actions, with a discourse that is rather holistic, while policies focus on “end of pipe solutions”.
To address these limitations, the paper proposes a set of 32 science-based policy recommendations which can help strengthen circular economy policies both within and outside the EU. This research thus brings key insights for practitioners and academics seeking to better understand the EU’s CE policies and how to improve circular economy implementation at both national and international level.
See here for more results, insights and recommendations.
Circular Czechia 2 - A circular economy as an opportunity for successful innovations of Czech firms
This report follows on from the publication Circular Czechia from July 2018, exploring the circular economy in the Czech Republic.
The report explains how innovation has developed in this field since 2018, and aims to be an inspiration for firms, organisations and authorities on how to implement circular principles. It sets out a wide selection of good practices from the Czech Republic, and includes the retail, wastewater treatment, transport, construction and furniture sectors.
The report analyses the relationship between resilience and the circular economy.
It presents socio-ecological resilience mechanisms, with particular reference to the impacts of COVID-19.
It explores various relevant topics such as resource efficiency, shared resources, regenerative resources, decentralisation, skills transferability, lifelong learning, flexible labour contracts and the strengthening of the sociological foundation.
It also presents three case studies from the Netherlands, Ecuador and India, showing how local companies enhance resilience and reduce vulnerability in various sectors.
Lastly, it gives recommendations for educating stakeholders in how to improve and implement stronger circular economy strategies.
This report describes innovation competition as a method of tackling major environmental challenges, specifically how to provide food sustainably and resource-efficiently in the future.
Two teams with expertise in plastics, logistics and sustainability developed solutions focused on a more regional food supply enabling us to reduce the amount of plastic, packaging and transport used. The winning submission is a conversion tool describing the principles of sustainable production and consumption of food.
How can design help the circular economy? Design is born from the need to find or adapt solutions to everyday problems.
Design is present throughout the value chain: production, location, distribution, transformation, transport, sales and user experience. Design can minimise the impact on the environment and simultaneously empower people in their habits and environmental preservation. This is done through shapes, materials, production processes, colours, legibility, concept and narratives that value what is systemic.
A design project starts by thinking about what you intend to achieve. A design collaboration (a dynamic of cause and effect) helps identify weaknesses and opportunities when it comes to adopting a circular design to each stage of the process.
In its position paper, Eurocities aims at contributing to the revision of the EU legislation on packaging and packaging waste by making proposals on:
- packaging design (to facilitate separate sorting by citizens, and further dismantling for reuse or recycling, i.e. less complexity in packaging materials)
- compostable/biodegradable plastic packaging (citizens cannot distinguish between biodegradable/compostable and more ‘conventional’ ones; the Commission should assess if this packaging can benefit the environment or create more littering and hamper waste collection, reuse and recycling)
- reuse and recycling (new legislation should consider EU-wide mandatory labelling to identify packaging as reusable, recyclable or compostable) and
- extending the EPR schemes.
The Future of Work: Baseline Employment Analysis and Skills Pathways for the Circular Economy in Scotland
The Future of Work: Baseline Employment Analysis and Skills Pathways for the Circular Economy in Scotland
This report explores the implications of the transition towards the circular economy for the Scottish labour market. It presents a baseline measurement of the number and geographical distribution of jobs currently related to the circular economy in Scotland and explores the types of circular jobs, roles and skills associated with opportunity areas in three value chains: construction, bioeconomy and capital equipment.
Circle Economy and Zero Waste Scotland designed this report to support enterprise agencies, workforce development, governments, universities, employers and other representatives to recognise the potential of the circular economy for the Scottish labour market and the related skills development needs of its workforce as part of a just transition.
This publication sets out the state of play of the circular economy concept in Serbia and identifies the main obstacles that may hamper the shift to the circular economy paradigm. It also includes circular economy initiatives in Serbia and an analysis of linkages between the circular economy concept and the Sustainable Development Goals.
Addressing the circular economy only through waste management shows that the circular economy concept is still in its infancy in Serbia. According to the conclusions, the circular economy goes beyond
- waste management
- SDG12 and
- the environmental sector.
The circular economy and the Covid-19 recovery published by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation shows how policymakers can pave the way towards a low-carbon and prosperous economic recovery. The paper highlights 10 circular investment opportunities across five key sectors:
- the built environment
- plastic packaging
- food and
Addressing the growing calls for a recovery response that is in alignment with other global challenges, these specifically selected opportunities all optimise the use and circulation of assets, materials and nutrients. As governments take the critical action necessary to safeguard national economies and work towards a transformation that is resilient to future global risks, the circular economy has never been more relevant.
Following the publication of the Circular Economy Action Plan in March 2020, the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD) recently released a position paper to help ensure that any future regulations reflect the needs and aspirations of the lighting design profession.
The paper also addresses the impact of changes in the value chains of the lighting sector as a result of embracing circular economy - be it by creating second-hand markets or by adopting lighting as a service business model.
In its conclusion, the paper describes how lighting manufacturers, designers, contractors and clients could work together to ensure that the benefits of the circular economy can be achieved.
The Institut Cirkulární Ekonomiky (Institute for Circular Economy) is the Czech Republic’s foremost circular economy non-profit focusing on innovative environmental management. Together with its partners, the Institute works on projects that further the transition from a linear towards a circular system.
These include analytical and educational programmes as well as project management tools for various organisations and individuals, such as:
- Annual Waste as Resource conference for local authorities
- Zajimej.se, the Czech language web portal on circular economy
- Uplatni.se portal connecting companies with students looking for internships and thesis in circular economy
Additionally, the Institute also engages private companies and public sector institutions with research, events, workshops and policy development in the Czech Republic.
The Prague Circular Hub is a joint initiative by the Institut Cirkularni Ekonomiky, Alliance for Renewable Energy and the Brno Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. Its vision is to build a cultural and innovation centre which seeks to acquaint the general and professional public with circular economy. With discussions, seminars, conferences, as well as pilot projects aimed at testing new research methods in the field of circular economy, the Prague Circular Hub contributes to the active transformation into a circular system.
While the Hub has already completed a Prague Circular Scan with the support of Circle Economy, it continues to organise regular ‘buzz talks’ and conduct further research to promote the adoption of circular business models in the Czech capital.
Žiedine Ekonomika (Circular Economy) is a Lithuanian association promoting a circular economy. This non-profit organisation networks local, national and European public authorities with companies to help develop circular business models in Lithuania.
In 2018, the Estonian Environmental Management Association established a Circular Economy Forum, which now already counts several companies among its members and receives support from the national Ministry of Environment.
The Circular Economy Forum is an open platform for communication and cooperation to raise business awareness of the circular economy and support wider application of circular business models.
The forum is aimed at companies operating in Estonia that have an interest in applying circular economy principles in practice. Alongside regular events, the forum also publishes good practices from Estonian industry.
To join the forum, email firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information:
- Company name
- Name and contact details of company representative
- What is your interest in circular economy?
The WRAP (Waste and Resource Action Plan) is a UK catalyst active in the space between citizens, government and businesses that focuses on maximising the value of waste by increasing the quantity and quality of materials collected for re-use and recycling. It does so by conducting research, brokering voluntary agreements and implementing campaigns to empower consumer action.
- Barriers to Recycling at Home helped hundreds of local authorities build an evidence base and coherent strategy to get communities engaged and committed to recycling.
- Switched on to value identified £1 billion of unused electronics in UK homes, and demonstrates that extending the life of electrical products could save businesses £400 million a year.
- Reducing Food Waste by Extending Product Life motivated supermarket Tesco to source fresh produce more quickly, helping them to offer their customers products that stay fresh for longer.
- Valuing Our Clothes provided the first comprehensive insight into the financial and environmental impact of clothing. It revealed that UK households own £30 billion worth of unused clothing.
- The Courtauld Commitment 2025 is an ambitious voluntary agreement that brings together a broad range of organisations to make food and drink production and consumption more sustainable. It builds on the success of the Courtauld Commitments 1, 2 and 3 in preventing waste and avoiding carbon emissions.
- The Sustainable Clothing Action Plan (SCAP) brings together industry, government and the third sector to reduce resource use and improve the sustainability of clothing. The agreement targets every stage of the clothing journey, bringing together retailers, brands, re-use and recycling organisations, charities and NGOs, which collectively make up over 40% of UK clothing sales.
- The UK Plastics Pact aims to create a circular economy for plastics. It brings together businesses from across the entire plastics value chain with UK governments and NGOs to tackle the scourge of plastic waste.
- Love Food Hate Waste in partnership with major UK supermarkets. The campaign gives individuals the information they need to recognise and tackle food waste.
- Love Your Clothes offers practical advice to help people make the most of their clothes, as well as demonstrating the benefits of repairing, re-using and recycling them.
- Recycle Now provides information and advice to help individuals recycle more. It is the national recycling campaign for England, used by over 90% of English local authorities.
Circular Norway is Norway's first and only politically independent, independent member organisation that works nationally to transform a linear to a circular economy. On behalf of its members, the association works politically to strengthen framework conditions and increase the pace of change.
Circular Norway helps its members to make better use of their resources and strengthens their competitiveness in the national and international market. Through practical help, expertise and knowledge networks, it makes the transition to a circular economy both easier and more profitable.
The network published the first comprehensive report on Norway and Circular Economy in April 2019, and has also begun producing visual guides to explain the principles of circular economy for a Norwegian audience. Circular Norway was instrumental in bringing the concept to the forefront of political discussion by hosting a session on circular economy at the August 2019 'arendulska political festival'.
Vlaanderen Circulair (Circular Flanders) is the hub and inspiration for the Flemish circular economy. It is a partnership of policymakers, companies, civil society, and the knowledge community taking action together. Its six core activities are:
- Networking partners to tackle circular economy challenges
- Creating knowledge with the Circular Economy Policy Research Centre to streamline policy-related research into policy measures for the circular economy in Flanders
- Speeding up innovation and entrepreneurship
- Assisting pioneers
- Connecting local, Flemish, federal and European policymaking
- Embedding circular principles across Flemish civil society
Key to the Circular Flanders approach are several pillars with a great deal of potential, which bridge and bring together different sectors. Currently, these are circular purchasing, circular cities, and running circular businesses.
Cradlenet is a multi-stakeholder association founded in 2009 to disseminate the Cradle2Cradle concept across Sweden, which has become the country's foremost circular economy network.
Cradlenet aims to accelerate Sweden's transition to a circular economy among companies, organisations and people in order to provide inspiration and momentum, and knowledge about developments in circular thinking.
With all seminars free of charge, Cradlenet members have access to further networking events and knowledge research.
Cradlenet is a non-profit association operating out of Stockholm, and with local networks in Umeå , Malmö and Gothenburg.
Through the Brussels Regional Programme for a Circular Economy, the government of the Brussels-Capital Region has defined a framework to encourage the transformation of a linear economy (extract – produce – consume – dispose) into a circular economy (recover – produce – consume – reuse) within Brussels.
The be circular portal is the entry point to the BRPCE, and networks the regional government with businesses and civil society delivering change on the ground, while also providing information to entrepreneurs about the various direct and indirect support programmes available.
Its projects include the Annual General Meeting linking more than 300 Brussels and European participants, and yearly Prizes for Circular Entrepreneurship. In 2017, be circular supported 222 entrepreneurs and financed 139 projects. A year later, the programme had reached nearly 1,300 businesses.
be circular also collects good practices from the Brussels region, with a particular focus on its four priority sectors: construction, logistics, retail and waste management.
- l’ADEME Grand Est,
- la Région Grand Est,
- la CCI Grand Est,
- la Chambre Régionale des Métiers et de l'Artisanat Grand Est,
- la Direction Régionale de l'Environnement, de l'Aménagement et du Logement Grand Est,
- l’Agence de l’eau Rhin-Meuse,
- le Centre International de Ressources et d'Innovation pour le Developpement Durable,
- l’Institut National de l'Economie Circulaire
ont créé collectif-grandest.org, la plateforme collaborative de l’économie circulaire des acteurs de la région. Ce portail territorial rassemble les initiatives, les acteurs, les connaissances, les outils, les actualités et les événements de l’économie circulaire.
Espace de valorisation, de partage et de rencontre, il est au service des collectivités locales, des entreprises et des associations du territoire.
On 11 May at 3 p.m. CEST, join Rijkswaterstaat, Madaster, Restado/Concular and Institut National de l’Economie Circulaire for online interactive workshops showcasing success stories and identifying challenges and opportunities in fields such as public procurement, digital logbooks and circular design for infrastructure work. Registrations are open!
On 15-16 April, the Netherlands and Sitra will be organising a high-level digital conference, the World Circular Economy Forum + Climate, to meet up and discuss the crucial role of a circular economy in achieving climate neutrality.
In the run-up to the WCEF+Climate event in April 2021, the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management is organising a WCEF+Climate pre-event: the Circular Climate Booster, hosted by Holland Circular Hotspot and Springtide International.
RREUSE is organising its second online study tour designed to help public authorities implement re-use activities. The tour is tailored for representatives of local, regional and national authorities, municipalities and public waste companies wishing to develop re-use activities in their area using a social enterprise model.
As the Horizon 2020 research programme becomes Horizon Europe, what better time to witness how great ideas turned into real projects? LOOPS will be the opportunity to show what cutting-edge research has been produced, and which changes it can bring to our communities. The topic of the episode on 12 April will orbit around the concept of circularity in the textile industry.
TCO Development has invited H&M to talk about their work on the sustainability initiative “Double Sales – Half Impact”. The session will explore how the initiative changed the organisation and what H&M has learned from it.
Circular Innovation Lab invites you to the launch event for ShopC - the first ever marketplace for circular fashion & lifestyle. Circular Innovation Lab has invited an exciting panel of participants – representatives of international organisations and fashion brands and circular economy experts – exploring topics such as sustainability, innovation and circular fashion & lifestyle.
On 26 March, the Dutch provinces of Overijssel, Drenthe and Northern Netherlands organise a webinar on the greening of Europe’s transport system and the contribution of inland ports to the transition to a sustainable and circular mobility sector.
The European Commission, in partnership with the city of Mannheim (DE), will hold a European Social Economy Summit on 26-27 May.
On 23 March (1:30 - 3:00 pm), in preparation of this summit, the EESC is organising a workshop to discuss how to bring a civil society perspective to the debate on the contribution of Social Economy Enterprises to the transition towards circular economy in Europe.
Tondo – an international non-profit organisation working in the field of circular economy – is pleased to announce its first hackathon, realised in collaboration with the Circular Economy Lab of Intesa Sanpaolo Innovation Center and Cariplo Factory and under the patronage of the Cariplo Foundation. The hackathon on 23-24 April will be held entirely in Italian.
EU environmental rules aim to ensure that end-of-life vehicles are managed sustainably. They seek to eliminate hazardous substances in cars and require that most ELV parts and materials are reused or recycled.
The Commission would like to hear your views on its proposal to improve collection, treatment and recycling of ELVs. You can give your feedback on this initiative until 19 November 2020.
Thank you! What a successful conference! Hundreds of you followed our conference. Given the exceptional circumstances, the conference adopted an online format.
Rendez-vous in 2021!
The webinar What will the German Presidency deliver on Circular Economy? organised by FEAD will focus on the on-going discussions under the German Presidency of the Council with regard to the new Circular Economy Action Plan and the key measures that are needed to ensure the full achievement of EU ambitions. Save-the-date: 5 November!
The European Commission is inviting all citizens and the wider community of stakeholders to express their views in a consultation on the revision of the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive before 6 January 2021.
The International E-waste Day initiative on 14 October aims to reduce the environmental burden of e-waste and to save natural resources. TCO Development has launched an e-waste quiz to support educational and awareness-raising activities linked to this initiative.
In 2020, more than ever, we need to work towards building resilient cities which can recover from environmental, social and health crises. CEC believes that the circular economy is a model that will help cities become more resilient. Circular Cities Week will take place on 26 Oct. to 1 Nov. 2020, alongside United Nations World Cities Day.
The European Commission's DG GROW is calling for applicants to select new members for the High-Level Steering Group (and its Sherpa sub-group) and the Operational Group of the European Innovation Partnership (EIP) on Raw Materials.
Major Cities in Europe - like Budapest, Copenhagen, Helsinki, Ljubljana, Oslo, Prague and Tirana - have signed the European Circular Cities Declaration inviting peers to join them! The have committed themselves to leading the circular transition and to new models of production and consumption, whilst improving human wellbeing and reducing emissions.
The European Commission has decided to launch a €1 billion call for research and innovation projects that respond to the climate crisis and help protect Europe’s unique ecosystems and biodiversity. The Horizon 2020-funded European Green Deal Call is open for registration. It will spur Europe’s recovery from the coronavirus crisis by turning green challenges into innovation opportunities.
On 16 September 2020, the President of the European Commission, Ms Ursula von der Leyen, gave her first State of the European Union address. President von der Leyen presented the priorities of the Commission for the coming year where the green transition of the economy and the circular economy hold prominent places.