The Ressourcerie Namuroise in Belgium provides collection and processing services for bulky household waste, while also helping people with scant marketable skills to break into the labour market. In 2017, the cooperative established a partnership with Namur's waste management authority, which enabled municipalities to outsource the collection of bulky items with a view to their reuse.
Opravárna operates a web portal putting repair and service businesses in touch with people who need their services. It has also founded the Association Opravme Česko (Let's fix Czechia) in order to to bring together all relevant partners pursuing the same objectives - waste prevention and transition to a circular economy.
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.
This guidance document aims at supporting public authorities in identifying the most suited incentive or combination of incentives to speed up the transition towards a circular economy at EU, National, Regional or Local level. The list of incentives is non-exhaustive and some of them have been implemented in Member States at the forefront of this transition.
The COVID-19 pandemic is having an immense impact on societies across the world. It has caused millions of deaths worldwide and challenged our health systems and economies. The pandemic - and responses to it, involving lockdowns, use of personal protection equipment and stay-at-home measures - has far-reaching health and economic consequences.
This briefing deals with the less visible effects on our environment and climate originating from changed use of single-use plastics due to the pandemic.
Renewable energy technologies, such as wind turbines, solar photovoltaic panels and batteries, are essential for Europe’s transition to climate neutrality. Deployment, maintenance and replacement of this infrastructure requires significant resources, including many substances included in the EU list of critical raw materials.
Waste arising from end-of-life clean energy infrastructure is projected to grow up to 30-fold over the next 10 years, presenting significant opportunities to reduce consumption of scarce raw materials by recycling metals and other valuable resources back into production systems.
Circular economy approaches such as repair and upgrading of equipment and recycling of end-of-life infrastructure can underpin the sustainability credentials of EU renewable energy.
The extraction/processing of raw materials is associated with potentially significant environmental impacts, including contributing to approximately half of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions globally. In the EU, non-energy, non-agricultural raw materials account for 18 % of GHG emissions associated with EU consumption.
Given the EU's commitment to reducing its GHG emissions, and the European Green Deal's aspiration to achieve a climate-neutral continent by 2050, mitigating climate impacts from raw material production is central to the EU's climate agenda.
All activities associated with collecting waste materials for recycling lead to GHG emissions. Especially for metals, however, their contribution to emissions is only a fraction of the emissions saved by not using primary metals.
The extraction and processing of raw materials are associated with potentially significant environmental impacts, including contributing to approximately half of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions globally. In the EU, non-energy, non-agricultural raw materials, although a small subset of all raw materials and natural resources, account for 18 % of GHG emissions associated with EU consumption. In the context of the EU's commitment to reducing its share of global GHG emissions, as well as the European Green Deal's aspiration to achieve a climate-neutral continent by 2050, mitigating climate impacts from raw material production has a central role to play in the EU's climate agenda.
Every year, about 100 billion tons of material are taken from the planet - but only 10 billion are circularized. The results of the TOP 10 study clearly highlight the differences between the systems: the waste culture and concepts are different in the Global North and the Global South, as are the objectives of the respective legislations.
In the Global North, the goal is to decouple waste generation from consumption. In the Global South, waste increases with per capita income; here, the old consumption patterns and images of the rich Global North are often emulated.
Scorecards are used in the study to assess individual materials and their circular maturity in the region. The overall score is shown in the summary per material.
By designing and enabling the use of Electric Vehicle (EV) batteries for multiple use-cycles, valuable materials are maintained, and a range of economic and environmental benefits can be unlocked.
Innovators from the automotive industry, Dutch and French public authorities, and the European Commission have collaborated to identify regulatory barriers to reusing EV batteries as energy storage devices and unlock solutions.
France’s Anti-waste and Circular Economy Law is a great example of cross-sectoral collaboration. Policymakers, municipalities, NGOs and businesses worked together with the public administration to identify a richer range of needs, solutions, and policy measures. As a result, the law is ambitious and contributes to a system-wide transition towards a circular economy.
Through fermentation, bread scraps can produce chemical compounds for the pharmaceutical and food industries, fuels and enzymes. The starters (which kickstart the fermentation process) obtained by this project confirm the huge economic and technological potential of a growing substrate obtained from low-cost matrices.
The protocol includes homogenisation of the waste bread (leavened bakery products), with the addition of enzymes and final sterilisation.
The culture medium can be liquid (broth), solid (agar) or dehydrated. The substrate can be used for cultivating lactic bacteria, yeasts and moulds (for the food industry).
About 10% of the bread waste produced monthly can be used to yield a culture medium for bacterial starters.
This report is published by the Cyprus Federation of Employers & Industrialists (OEB), the Institute of Greek Tourism Confederation (INSETE) and the public policy consultancy adelphi (Germany) as part of the European project Hotels4Climate financed by EUKI.
The report aims to assess the current state of circularity in the hotel industry in Cyprus and Greece by conducting national surveys in both countries targeting hotels in order to:
identify the priority sectors within the main services offered by hotels, the business challenges and opportunities to move to circular economy,
create successful, flexible and resilient circular business models, and
identify a number of internal and external barriers that raise obstacles to the transition to circular economy.
R-PVC Hub is an innovative web platform, connected to the site of PVC Forum Italia, that offers the possibility for the exchange of recycled PVC, putting in contact offers and demands. The heart of the service is an online platform on which manufacturing companies, processors and recyclers can find new business opportunities.
Enea has designed the first Italian industrial symbiosis platform, as a tool to facilitate the process.
The ENEA methodology is based on a "horizontal" network approach, with the aim of creating synergies and closing the loop between supply and demand for various resources.
The Platform is based on:
an expert structure that identifies possible solutions of industrial symbiosis
a complex information structure, also georeferenced, which describes the territory, its structures, the interlocutors and available resources
a network that connects different interlocutors
a web interface.
Among other activities and services, Symbiosis is able to send to to each company individual reports containing information on potential matches of interest. It is also developing operating manuals for industrial symbiosis.
The Circular Economy Foundation (FEC) is a private, Iberian ambit foundation working in areas related to circular economy, sustainability, resource use and environment.
FEC has launched PIPEC, a multi-participant Iberian platform (Spain, Portugal and Andorra) whose aim is promoting the Circular Economy and its potential advantages such as sustainable development, eco-competitiveness of companies, new proximity employment, reduction of dependence on raw materials, energy and material efficiency, reduction of the ecological footprint, promotion of local and quality production, prevention and minimization of waste, protection of natural capital, increased ecological resilience and the reduction of carbon emissions.
FEC has launched this platform in order to involve all actors in the life cycle (or value chains), with the aim of discussing the possible orientations and co-build innovative economic initiatives. PIPEC is structured in: "Multiparticipant" Working Groups and Sectorial Platforms.
Cirkelstad is a national platform connecting private entrepreneurs and policy-makers who are delivering the transition to a circular economy in pioneering Dutch cities. By facilitating their networking, the platform enables greater impact by spreading best practice.
In addition to a comprehensive database of good practice, research and policy guidelines to inspire practicioners, the Cirkelstad Academie also provides occassional trainings and provides advisory services to aspiring circular projects in Utrecht and Amsterdam.
To learn more about this hands-on network and connect with the 'spinners' coordinating activities in each city, visit the platform here.
The Polyolefin Circular Economy Platform (PCEP) is a European joint industry value chain initiative, founded by two plastics industry associations (EuPC and PlasticsEurope) in order to advance the circular economy by increasing the reuse and recycling of polyolefin-based products and the use of recyclates as raw material.
Polyofelins are the most widely used family of plastics. They are present in every day life and are fully recyclable. Their main products are high, low and linear low density polyethylene (HDPE, LDPE, LLDPE) and polypropylene (PP). Polyethylene (PE) and PP represent close to 50% of the total European plastic production and are largely utilized in various plastic applications.
PCEP recognises that a business-as-usual approach will not enable the proposed challenging target of 55% plastic packaging "preparing for re-use and recycling” by 2025, as outlined in the European Commission’s Circular Economy Package, so the platform will be working for a 5-10 year horizon based on effective, science-based solutions. It will initially focus on polyolefin-based packaging as it represents the application segment where highest quantities of valuable recycled raw materials can be generated.
PCEP is developing activities in the following areas of work:
Development of packaging design guidelines and assessment.
Innovation to increase the recyclability of flexible and rigid packaging.
EU-wide quality standards for sorted plastics, harmonisation of test methods for recycled plastic materials and certification of plastic recycling operations.
Innovation & development of end-use markets to encourage demand for recycled plastics.
Stimulating innovation to improve mechanical recycling, conversion technologies and reuse.
Driving the R&D of new technologies to convert non-mechanically recyclable plastics into feedstock for the production of new materials.
#gocircularnow (GCN) is a consumer-focused campaign to advance the transition to a circular economy. It encourages a more sustainable way of living and consuming that’s realistic, affordable and simple to incorporate.
As part of this movement, GCN provides consumers with the information and means needed to ask their favourite brands to #gocircularnow, while providing clarity on the many different ways in which circularity can be of benefit to their daily lives.
GCN also promotes makers currently operating within the structures of circular production, bringing them to the attention of consumers so they can be seen as viable alternatives to non-circular brands.
Its mix of engaging content and opinion communicates in ways that take the conversation around sustainability out of its current ‘eco-bubble’, connecting with everyday realities to make conscious consumption the new normal.
MaterialDistrict is a unique platform for innovative materials which empowers global innovation by match-making material needs with material solutions in the name of circularity. R&D and design professionals of all industrial sectors use this platform to discover new material solutions daily via MaterialDistrict's independent collection of materials, annually at MaterialDistrict Rotterdam and periodically throughout the year with travelling MaterialDistrict Expo, MaterialDistrict Talks and MaterialDistrict Pop-Up events.
C-SERVEES is a network aiming at activating Circular Services in the Electric and Electronic Sector through the development, testing, validation and transfer of new circular economic business models based on systemic eco-innovative services that include:
eco-leasing of electrical and electronic equipment (EEE),
improved management of waste of electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE),
and ICT services to support the other eco-services.
ICT tools (relying on QR codes) will be developed as the driver of the proposed eco-innovative services to take full advantage of the potential and synergies of two major revolutions of our time: the circular economy and the Industry 4.0.
C-SERVEES will contribute to transform the E&E sector into circular and 4.0, raising new opportunities for end-users (such as their involvement in design or the access to a product as a service) and for social and solidarity economy (conducted by NGOs employing people at risk of social exclusion to repair and prepare WEEE for re-use). The techno-economic, environmental and social viability of the new circular economy business models will be validated through demonstrations dealing with four target products: washing machines, toner cartridges, telecom equipment and TVs.
Its vision is to build a restorative African economy that generates well-being and prosperity inclusive of all its people, through new forms of economic production and consumption which maintain and regenerate its environmental resources.
The research activities of the ACEN will investigate issues, document findings relevant for the African context and its needs. Researchers will be drawn from ACEN members, academics and other stakeholder partners across Africa, but also Europe, Asia or America, where needed.
Training and Awareness
The priority of ACEN is to raise awareness and undertake training amongst key sectors of the African economy: public (government, educational institutions), private (corporates & SMEs), and civil society (non-governmental organisations) to promote the concept, benefits, principles and practice of the Circular Economy.
Networking and Events
ACEN believes that solutions to current challenges require inter-disciplinary skills, multiple stakeholder involvement and regional, African as well as international partnerships. It therefore aims to create platforms where specialists can collaborate to exchange ideas, experiences and solutions. ACEN has hosted several stakeholder engagements to date to enable a global reach. Members from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation (UK), Pavia University (Italy), the South African/European Union Partnership (South Africa), the World Economic Forum (Switzerland) and Green Alliance (UK), to name a few, have joined the discussion.
ACEN currently disseminates and shares knowledge about the circular economy through LinkedIn and Facebook, and in the future, will also use other online channels to develop a strong base of knowledge and information and extend its reach throughout South Africa and Africa.
The network is active in over 24 countries. In 2017 it co-organised the first Circular Economy Conference in Africa with the European Union and the South African Government (World Economic Forum Africa, Durban). It is engaged with the EU to discuss approaches on ways to be inspired by the African continent and enable more circular strategies (less negative impact), and with training, research and knowledge sharing with corporate and universities.
Construction materials and products represent about 50% of all raw materials extracted from the earth's crust. Construction and demolition activities represent 50% of all waste generated.
The ECESP Leadership Group on Buildings and Infrastructure invites you to attend this #EUCircularTalks on 20 October from 10:00 to noon CEST. Join the expert panel to find out just how effective the construction system is in using secondary materials from the supply chain and the advantages of that in terms of CO2 emissions and embodied energy using secondary materials.
Re-think - Circular Economy Forum | Taranto 2022 sets out a vision of macro-trends, possible evolutionary paths and key projects concerning the circular economy at both Italian and international level.
Mazovia Circular Congress is the closing day of Circular Week 2022 and will take place in Warsaw on 7 October 2022. This international hybrid event will involve the participation of small and large firms, start-ups, investors, representatives of public administrations and local governments, enterprises, managers dealing with sustainable development and corporate social responsibility, and the media.
This cross-border event on 15 September organised by Holland Circular Hotspot will focus on chemical recycling, a topic that is likely to play a crucial role in making the chemical industry both circular and climate neutral. There will be opportunities for business collaboration and matchmaking between all relevant German (North Rhine-Westphalia) and Dutch stakeholders in the chemical recycling value chain.
From 31 August to 2 September, the national student conference 'Circular Insights 2022' will take place in Wuppertal, North-Rhine Westphalia. Students and graduates from all fields of study will meet with companies to focus on the joint development of possible solutions paving the way for a sustainable and circular future. You can still register for this event.
14 October 2022 | International E-Waste Day: Recycle it all, no matter how small! This year, the main focus of International E-Waste Day will be on those small electrical devices that we no longer use, but keep in drawers and cupboards or often toss in the bin.
In March 2022, the European Commission released its EU strategy for sustainable and circular textiles in the Circular Economy Action Plan framework. The strategy aims at setting a framework to boost the competitiveness, sustainability and resilience of the EU textile sector.
Six months after its release, where do we stand? Join the ECESP leadership group on Textile and all speakers during this #EUCircularTalks event on 26 September, from 14:30 - 16:00 CEST, to discuss the EU textile strategy, its implementation and vision for the current textile industry.
On 13 July 2022 at 12:00 - 16:00 CEST, the European Union and the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KADIN) will host a workshop "Policies for Circular Product Design" in support of the G20 Resource Efficiency Dialogue (RED).
Speakers from around the world will share their analysis and business perspectives to explore how policy makers can support circular redesign of products to lower their environmental impact over their whole lifetime.
The new Circular Economy Action Plan identifies textiles as a key product value chain with potential to boost the EU market for sustainable and circular textiles. The European Commission is organising a series of targeted stakeholder workshops to gather input on challenges and gaps as well as opportunities for the sector towards sustainability. Join the second workshop on 2 June 2021!
Imagine Circularity is a new global initiative aiming to reach one million people in Europe and beyond. At its core is a short survey which exposes all participants to the basics of a circular economy, educates them and gathers their views and perceptions of circularity.
The New Circular Economy Action Plan identifies textiles as a key product value chain where there is potential to boost the EU market for sustainable and circular textiles. The European Commission has launched a public consultation to gather input on challenges and gaps as well as opportunities for the sector towards sustainability.
The New European Bauhaus has the ambition to make the Green Deal a cultural, human-centred and positive, tangible experience. Its Prizes will give visibility to examples and concepts that illustrate how beautiful, sustainable, inclusive places already exist in our territories, our communities and in our practices, paving the way to the future.
The Asia-Europe Environment Forum (ENVForum) Workshop Series on Circular Plastic Use: Innovate & Change to Close the Loop offers participants the opportunity to design and implement innovative solutions in the field of circular plastic use and waste management. This project planned for June 2021 is organized in association with INNOWO.
"Innovative Business Practices and Economic Models in the Textile Value Chain" (InTex) is a three-year UNEP project funded by the European Union. The InTex project has five components, two with global reach and three focusing on national implementation in three African countries: Kenya, South Africa and Tunisia.
A new partnership led by the UNIDO is looking for interested organisations to express their interest in joining ‘SWITCH to Circular Economy Value Chains’ - a five-year European Union-funded project that aims to accelerate the transition to more circular value chains (namely textiles and garments, and plastic packaging) in developing countries.
Five consortium partners, including Ecopreneur.eu, have kicked off an EU-COSME funded project “Fashion For Change”. Over the next 3 years, they will help SMEs, designers and start-ups from the European fashion sector scale-up and accelerate their sustainable businesses while increasing awareness about circular fashion among stakeholders, including consumers. Share your views in the quick poll.