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Enhancing a resource-efficient, circular economy in the food and drink industry

FoodDrinkEurope - an organisation representing Europe's food and drinks industry - has designed a website explaining what the industry is currently doing to enhance a resource-efficient circular economy.

Entitled Ingredients for a Circular Economy, the website specifically looks at the areas of farming, manufacturing, sustainable packaging and consumers, providing numerous examples of how the European food and drinks industry is helping to promote circular economy. The website also sets out policy recommendations for how to unlock further sustainable growth and innovation for a resource-efficient circular economy in the food and drinks industry. 

Measuring Scotland’s progress towards a circular economy to help combat the climate emergency

Measuring Scotland's progress towards a circular economy

zerowastescotland

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Author: 
Zero Waste Scotland
Publication Date: 
06/2020
Country: 
United Kingdom

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Contact: 
Jack Barrie

Zero Waste Scotland has commissioned a study on Measuring Scotland's progress towards a circular economy, in order to assess the value of existing metrics and identify the most effective ways to drive and track progress on reducing our carbon emissions.

The study has concluded that no single metric could be used to monitor Scotland’s progress on adopting a circular economy. However, a range of metrics could be developed and used collectively.

Two datasets in particular (a Scottish material flows accounts and Scotland’s carbon footprint) will be key to this as the country progresses towards a circular economy

The Alliance for Flame Retardant Free Furniture position paper - Unwanted toxic flame retardants preventing circularity and increasing fire toxicity

The Alliance for Flame Retardant Free Furniture states its position: Unwanted toxic flame retardants prevent circularity and increase fire toxicity

Alliance for Flame Retardant Free Furniture
Author: 
The Alliance for Flame Retardant Free Furniture
Publication Date: 
04/2020
Country: 
Belgium

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Contact: 
Gabriella Kemendi
Giorgia Murgia

The Alliance for Flame Retardant Free Furniture welcomes the new Circular Economy Action Plan and calls on EU institutions to address the unnecessary use of chemicals preventing circularity and the achievement of climate goals, such as toxic flame retardants in furniture, which endanger people’s and firefighters’ health as they migrate out of products and can lead to increased fire toxicity.

The use of such retardants is a historical, hazardous and ineffective practice which is not proven to reduce the number of fires. It is at odds with circularity objectives and their presence in furniture runs counter to the ambition to introduce and increase circularity.

Ensuring fire safety is a must, but it needs to be done in ways that are not hazardous.

With b:bot, plastic bottle recycling counts twice

Based on a circular economic model that combines ecology and economy, b:bot is a machine and digital ecosystem for the collection of PET plastic bottles - with a real social and environmental impact.

EFIC Position paper: The Furniture sector and Circular Economy 2.0

The furniture sector and Circular Economy 2.0: the European Furniture Industries Confederation shares its views

Author: 
EFIC - European Furniture Industries Confederation
Publication Date: 
04/2020
Country: 
Belgium

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Furniture

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Contact: 
Gabriella Kemendi
Giorgia Murgia

From a “circular” point of view, the wide range of products considered to be "furniture" and the diverse use of materials in production (e.g. wood, plastics, textile, steel, glass, composites, foam) makes it a complex area to address.

The European Furniture Industries Confederation (EFIC) has drawn up a position paper that identifies challenges and opportunities linked to the circular economy transition, covering the different phases of manufacturing from supply of materials to the end-of-life phase, and that provides sector-specific expertise on EU Circular Economy policies.

The European furniture industries are ready to work together with EU institutions to create suitable tools for the sector, enabling it to move in the right direction.

Source: EFIC

Plan d'action Economie circulaire européen - Analyse et recommandations

INEC's analysis of the new European Circular Economy Action Plan

In March 2020, the European Commission published the new Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP). Following of this publication, the French Institut National de l'Economie Circulaire (INEC) has published an analysis of the new action plan, followed by some recommendations:

  1. promote the inter-sectoral dimension of circular economy (CE);
  2. speed up the integration of the CE dimension into public procurement;
  3. introduce a coherent circular-oriented tax system;
  4. transition towards a non-financial accounting system;
  5. teach people to be circular;
  6. start a discussion on "equitable" needs;
  7. blockchain, territories and behavioural change.

To read the full report (in FR) click here.

 

Impacts and Insights: Circular IT Management in Practice

Impacts and Insights: Circular IT Management in Practice

The report from TCO Development, the organization behind the global sustainability certification for IT products TCO Certified, explains how everyone who buys/uses IT products can implement circular practices. It sets out how circular economy (CE) helps solve many pressing sustainability challenges linked to IT products and contains 33 expert tips on circular IT management.

Key findings:

  1. Use IT products longer.
  2. Circularity helps maximize the value of IT investment.
  3. Market demand is key to accelerating the pace of change. 
  4. Circularity includes IT management throughout the life cycle. 
  5. Improved supply chain responsibility can speed up transition to CE. 
  6. Circularity is a team effort.
  7. Many circular solutions are already in place - just use them.

The reality of plastics: myths and truths

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Author: 
Elena Ruiz, Tania Fernández and Raquel Canales
Publication Date: 
06/2020
Country: 
Spain

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Contact: 
Elena Ruiz
Germán Granda

The Circular Economy Action Group, the business initiative promoted by Forética in Spain to lead the transition of companies towards a circular economy model, has produced a report entitled "The reality of plastics: myths and truths" [La realidad de los plásticos: Mitos y verdades].

The aim of the report is to ensure a better understanding of plastic waste pollution, thus promoting the foundations of the new plastics economy. It also outlines the actions to be taken in order to improve plastic circularity.

Forética's mission is to promote the integration of social, environmental and good governance aspects in the strategy and management of companies and organisations with one objective: to achieve a sustainable future.

Test yourself and your lifestyle by Sitra

Sitra logo

Is your lifestyle good or bad for the environment? After taking this short test by the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra, you will receive tailor-made tips. The aim is to help you save time and money and so to improve your quality of life. 

EUMEPS op-ed on the ‘Renovation Wave’

EUMEPS op-ed: Thermal insulation improvements in the EU building Renovation Wave also promote the Circular Economy

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Op-ed
Author: 
Association for European Manufacturers of Expanded Polystyrene (EUMEPS)
Publication Date: 
06/2020
Country: 
Belgium

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Contact: 
Flavia Ferri

The European Manufacturers of Expanded Polystyrene (EUMEPS) is the voice of the Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) industry. It has published an op-ed welcoming the European Commission’s commitment to a Renovation Wave and the outline of its strategy shared in the roadmap published in May 2020. It believes that this initiative is a great opportunity for scaling-up current renovation rates and EU’s climate and energy efficiency goals.

EUMEPS agrees that increased renovation can be a key contributor to creating jobs and stimulating economic recovery in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. It embraces the Commission’s finding that buildings are also critical for making circularity work and its objective to implement the Renovation Wave in line with circular economy principles.

SUMMARY/PRESENTATION OF THE CIRCULAR ARAGON STRATEGY

Aragon Circular Strategy

Estrategia Aragón Circular

Aragón Circular is an economic strategy that aims to boost the circular economy in the entire region of Aragon. Its objective is to create a political, economic, and social framework that will allow Aragon to move towards an innovative circular economy. Furthermore, this strategy will generate high-quality employment and provide the backbone for the territory.

EuRIC - Plastic Recycling Factsheet

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Author: 
EuRIC - European Recycling Industries' Confederation
Publication Date: 
06/2020
Country: 
Belgium

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Contact: 
Alejandro Navazas
EuRIC General Contact

Plastics represent a serious waste-handling problem with only 10% of the plastic waste generated worldwide being recycled. Plastics recycling is instrumental to close the loop of the circular economy by re-introducing into the economy high-quality plastic recyclates incorporated into new products.

The brochure highlights the importance of moving towards a circular economy for plastics in Europe. It identifies the most commonly used types of plastics and describes the current state-of-play, challenges faced by the European mechanical plastics recycling industry and key recommendations for overcoming them. Plastics recycling’s environmental benefits and economic importance are also touched upon.

Civil Society European Strategy for Sustainable Textile, Garments, Leather and Footwear

Civil Society European Strategy for Sustainable Textile, Garments, Leather and Footwear

A broad coalition of social and environmental NGOs has developed a Civil Society European Strategy for Sustainable Textiles, Garments, Leather and Footwear, looking at the social, environmental and governance implications of the textile sector in one forward-looking document ahead of the comprehensive EU Strategy for Textiles, expected in 2021.

The document aims to contribute to the upcoming comprehensive EU Strategy for Textiles, by providing recommendations on what such a Strategy should encompass in order to maintain a high level of ambition. It includes forward-looking proposals on due diligence, product policy framework, waste, unfair trading practices, international trade, support to producing countries, alternative business models and a multi-stakeholder platform.

The Covid-19 recovery requires a resilient circular economy

The Covid-19 recovery requires a resilient circular economy

The coronavirus crisis has disastrous human and economic consequences, revealing our system's exposure to a variety of risks. As the pandemic forces us to adapt our daily lives in ways we would not have imagined, it is also challenging us to rethink the systems that underpin the economy.

While addressing public health consequences is clearly the priority, before the crisis, momentum had already been increasing around the need for a system reset, and the potential of a circular model.

Far from the pandemic pushing the circular economy agenda to the bottom of the list, this article by Jocelyn Blériot at the Ellen MacArthur Foundation highlights and reiterates that it is now more relevant than ever, and sets out to explore the wider possibilities for recovery.

Scaler Quick Guides – Helping industries increase efficiency through resource sharing

SCALER

SCALER provides mechanisms to accelerate the journey towards efficient and quick implementation of industrial symbiosis in the European process industry. They do this by developing action plans and adapted solutions to industrial stakeholders and communities.

SCALER works closely with a wide range of stakeholders including industrial networks, consultancies, researchers and policy makers at various geographic and political levels, to deliver practical tools and guidelines for industry actors engaging in resource efficiency, reuse and sharing.

To achieve this goal, SCALER is developing a set of reports and guides. They offer insights into how businesses can start industrial resource synergies with other companies to minimise their waste and create more value from their production.

Leuven Circulair - a detailed programme for circularity, in the context of Leuven 2030 Roadmap

The city of Leuven, in Flanders, aims to play a leading role in initiating systemic change in cities and society at large.

The Roadmap 2025 · 2035 · 2050, drawn up by Leuven 2030 and numerous experts, serves as a guide to achieving the goal of a climate-neutral city by 2050. In September 2019 a professional team of programme managers started on no less than 13 specific programmes, which will transform this unique plan into concrete actions and impact on the field.

Leuven Circulair finds its place in specific programme #09, outlining key actions for circularity in the city with a strong focus on social, repair, refurbishment, knowledge and expertise from the University of Leuven and local fablabs.

European Parliament Study on Sustainable Consumption and Consumer Protection Legislation

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Author: 
Bert KEIRSBILCK, KU Leuven, Evelyne TERRYN, KU Leuven, Anaïs MICHEL, KU Leuven, Ivano ALOGNA, BIICL
Publication Date: 
04/2020
Country: 
EU

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Contact: 
Policy Department for Economic, Scientific and Quality of Life Policies

How can sustainable consumption and longer lifetime of products be promoted through consumer protection legislation?

This in-depth analysis investigates the contribution, or lack of contribution, of the current EU consumer protection legislation to sustainable consumption and longer lifetime of products. In addition, it gives an overview of the most relevant best practices at national and international level and provides recommendations on the future development and possible reforms of European consumer protection legislation with a view to more sustainable consumption and longer lifetime of products.

This study was commissioned by the European Parliament Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO).

Promoting product longevity

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Author: 
J. Scott MARCUS, Bruegel, Georg ZACHMANN, Bruegel, Stephen GARDNER, Bruegel, Simone TAGLIAPIETRA, Bruegel, Elissavet LYKOGIANNI, VVA
Publication Date: 
03/2020
Country: 
EU

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Contact: 
Policy Department for Economic, Scientific and Quality of Life Policies

How can the EU product safety and compliance framework help promote product durability and tackle planned obsolescence, foster the production of more sustainable products, and achieve more transparent supply chains for consumers?

Product longevity can play a useful role in achieving the Paris Agreement goals – material efficiency is an important contributor to energy efficiency and is also important in its own right. The product safety and compliance instruments available at European level can contribute to these efforts, if wisely applied.

This study was commissioned by the European Parliament Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO).

Circular Fashion MOOC: Design, Science and Value in a Sustainable Clothing Industry

Wageningen MOOC

The fashion industry has a big influence on the global economy and is known for its social and environmental impact. This online course by Wageningen University & Research is an introduction to circular fashion, brought by 30 experts from academia and practice.

After this course, you will be able to:

  • Understand the role of sustainability and circularity in fashion
  • Understand the importance of design for disassembly and recycling
  • Evaluate new biobased materials for textiles and understand the change in production processes
  • Disrupt current thinking and mindset in the industry and manage the transition to circular fashion
  • Understand economic paradigms and new forms of value creation for circularity in the fashion industry

Read more and enrol.

The Circular Economy's Closed Loop and Product Service Systems: A Review and Appraisal

The circular economy's closed loop and product service systems for sustainable development: A review and appraisal

Author: 
Mark Anthony Camilleri
Publication Date: 
10/2018
Country: 
Malta, United Kingdom

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Contact: 
Mark Anthony Camilleri

This review paper of Mark Anthony Camilleri examines relevant regulatory guidelines, policies, and recommendations on sustainable development, where it traces the origins of circular economy (CE). It goes on to shed light on key theoretical underpinnings of CE's closed loop and product service systems.

The findings suggest that the CE's regenerative systems minimise the environmental impact as practitioners reduce their externalities, including waste, emissions, and energy leakages through the use and reuse of resources. Therefore, this contribution offers a critique on CE's inherent limitations and discusses about the implications of having regulatory interventions that are intended to encourage responsible consumption and production behaviours.

CircleAid: a network of experts and mentors to help you kick-start your circular initiative

Cities and entrepreneurs are expected to be full of inspiring and sustainable ideas but they often have a lot of questions before they can implement those ideas. How do you set up a product-as-a-service business model? How do I protect my logo? How can you support cititzens initiatives? How can the financiers be involved...

To get an answer to all these and other questions, you can ask experts at CircleAid. They have all their specific experience with circular economy: in business models, procurement, governance, financing...

These experts are mentors who can guide you through your circular questions. Consultants who want to become part of this database can apply if they have experience or knowledge in Circular Economy.

For the moment this platform is only available in Dutch.

The URBANREC project: new approaches for recovery of urban bulky waste to create high added-value recycled products

URBANREC: recovering urban bulky waste to create high added-value recycled products

Author: 
Anabel Crespo, Head of the AIMPLAS Composites Department
Publication Date: 
04/2020
Country: 
Spain

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Contact: 
Anabel Crespo

Despite continuous advances in municipal waste management, there are still several waste streams that offer limited opportunities for material recovery and thus end up in landfills and incineration plants.

One challenging stream is the “bulky waste”, defined by the URBANREC project as “(mixed) waste from households and similar waste from companies that does not fit (because of its size, shape or weight) in the regular receptacles used for household waste collection".

In this context, the URBANREC project aims to develop and implement a comprehensive eco-innovative bulky waste management system (to enhance prevention and reuse, improve logistics and develop new waste treatment methods to obtain high added-value recycled products) and show its effectiveness in different regions.

Overview Circular Flanders: a 2017-2019 retrospective

Circular Flanders

This retrospective report is a review of the plans set out by Circular Flanders in the Kick-off Statement.

The most important finding? A good deal more was accomplished than initially anticipated. For example, the opportunity to launch three Open Calls, permitting the funding of over 130 innovative circular economy projects. The Green Deal on Circular Construction was also an unprecedented opportunity, as was the complementary reinforcement of the OVAM team of experts in ecodesign and area-specific operations, allowing the scope to expand.

This retrospective report is an interactive PDF. External links to downloads or online resources have been embedded on each project page for easy accessibility.

Circular Economy Business Action Group

The Business Action Group was created with the aim of transposing the latest international trends, generating further knowledge and collaborating with the public administration regarding potential circular economy national strategies.

Chambers for a Circular Economy - Actions to Support SMEs' Transition to a Circular Economy

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Author: 
Valerio Burlizzi, Clemens Rosenmayr
Publication Date: 
02/2020
Country: 
Belgium

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Contact: 
Valerio Burlizzi
Clemens Rosenmayr

"Chambers for a Circular Economy - Actions to Support SMEs' Transition to a Circular Economy" aims to offer a clear overview of the wide range of initiatives led or co-managed by Chambers in the field of the Circular Economy, with the intention not only to inform and share innovative actions, but also to spur and motivate synergies, triggering collaborations and the creation of new business models. The aim of each and every of these projects is to enable businesses to evolve from a linear to a circular mode of production and consumption.

This publication presents a total of 32 projects initiated or co-led by Chambers in 13 countries, and categorized under 5 main topics:

  • certification,
  • circular skills,
  • cooperation,
  • reuse & recycle and
  • waste prevention.

'Become a Miljönär' campaign: beneficial to circular consumption and participating businesses

Miljönär-logo

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Sweden

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The campaign “Be a Miljönär” [a pun which merges miljö (environment) with miljonär (millionaire)] has a long-term goal: reducing waste and making sustainable consumption a habit among people aged between 18 and 30.

Concours Design Zéro Déchet

Le concours Design Zéro Déchet invite depuis 2012 les étudiants et jeunes diplômés en design, sciences de l’environnement, ingénierie et arts appliqués à réfléchir sur le sujet de l’écoconception et de la prévention des déchets à travers l’élaboration de biens ou services innovants et durables.

Green Generation - Together for the Earth

Green Generation - Together for the Earth

Green Generation

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Author: 
Polish Chamber of Digital Economy
Publication Date: 
01/2020
Country: 
Poland

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The Polish Chamber of Digital Economy, an Ecommerce Europe member, has published a report on sustainability in e-commerce.

This report, titled Green Generation, shows that Polish consumers generally spot environmentally-unfriendly behaviours of retailers, but they do not quite want to take responsibility for making e-commerce less harmful to the environment; only one in five consumers is willing to wait longer for a shipment to be delivered through a grouped consignment.

As they already engage in some environmentally-friendly practices, such as collecting parcels from dedicated points, they do not seem willing to take up financial responsibility, such as paying extra charges for more ecological packaging or deliveries.

Mercato Circolare - a smartphone app searching for circular economy products, services and events

Free-of-charge smartphone app to search for circular economy products, services and events. 

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