European Week for Waste Reduction (EWWR) encourages people in Europe and elsewhere to raise awareness about sustainable resources and waste management during a single week in November.
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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.
Always wondered how the circular economy could help your city/region in its energy transition? This FEDARENE webinar on The energy dimension of the circular economy is for you!
Dr Sarah Miller is Chief Executive of the Rediscovery Centre, Ireland's National Centre for the Circular Economy. Since 2005, Sarah has overseen the development of the centre as an ecological centre of excellence and an innovation hub for the circular economy in Ireland. Sarah has a keen interest in research and holds a PhD in Environmental Science, a Master’s in Business Administration and an Honours Degree in Biotechnology.
Based in Dublin, but operating on a national basis, the Rediscovery Centre is a creative movement connecting people, ideas and resources to support the circular economy and sustainable, low-carbon living. The centre’s work is built around the three key themes of education, demonstration and advocacy. To support the transition to a circular economy in Ireland, the centre provides training, education and events that inspire active participation and citizen engagement.
The visitor centre demonstrates good practice through social enterprise excellence, a reuse retail collective and onsite circular economy programmes and showcases. Working in partnership with the Environmental Protection Agency, the centre also runs the national Circular Economy Academy, a free mentoring and support programme to assist social enterprises and community organisations embrace circularity. In collaboration with the Irish government, regional and city authorities, NGOs, academic institutions and corporate partners, the Rediscovery Centre’s education, research and policy team coordinate action-based programmes which drive change and support the circular economy in Ireland.
Agnieszka Sznyk is chair of the Board at INNOWO, the Institute of Innovation and Responsible Development in Warsaw, Poland. She holds a PhD in Life Sciences and is an expert in the fields of sustainable production and consumption, circular economy and healthcare economics. Agnieszka has been connected with nongovernmental organisations for many years, notably as founder and manager of the Polish Circular Hotspot and the international educational campaign Circular Week.
Agnieszka serves as an economy expert at the CE Working Group under the National Smart Specializations (NSS) appointed by the Steering Committee, which consists of representatives of the Ministry of Investment and Economic Development, the Ministry of Science and Higher Education and the Ministry of Development Funds and Regional Policy in Poland.
She is author of numerous reports including:
- Environmental aspects of eco-design, August 2020
- Development of methodology and indicators for various business sectors with regards to circular economy from the regional perspective, December 2019
- Methodology for matching circular business models to priority sector implementation, December 2019
- Plastics in circular economy, May 2020
INNOWO (the Institute of Innovation and Responsible Development) is a foundation, non-governmental organisation and a THINK-to-DO TANK established to support the development of innovation and implementation of systemic changes for the purpose of sustainable socio-economic progress. The circular economy is the main field of interest and expertise of INNOWO. The organisation supports decision-makers and different stakeholder groups in identifying effective solutions and policy instruments to engage businesses and consumers in achieving a significant and lasting change towards sustainable production and consumption.
EuroCommerce is the principal European organisation representing the retail and wholesale sector. It embraces national associations in 31 countries and 5.4 million companies, both leading global players such as Carrefour, Ikea, Metro and Tesco, and many small businesses. Retail and wholesale provide a link between producers and 500 million European consumers over a billion times a day. It generates 1 in 7 jobs, providing a varied career for 29 million Europeans, many of them young people. It also supports millions of further jobs throughout the supply chain, from small local suppliers to international businesses. EuroCommerce is the recognised European social partner for the retail and wholesale sector.
Nick Dornheim is advisor for Environment & Sustainability at EuroCommerce. He focuses on promoting retailers' and wholesalers' circular economy initiatives such as deploying more sustainable products, ensuring the right waste management infrastructure and empowering consumers.
Consumer buy-in is key to unlocking the potential of circular approaches. How can we encourage consumers to engage in the circular economy? Drawing on the results of CIRC4Life, the webinar on "How to encourage consumer engagement in the circular economy?" on 20 October 2020 will present examples of circular business models and discuss how to engage consumers in circular practices.
The Waste Action Plan for a Circular Economy fulfils the commitment in the Programme for Irish Government to publish and start implementing a new National Waste Action Plan. This new national waste policy will inform and give direction to waste planning and management in Ireland over the coming years. It will be followed later this year by an All of Government Circular Economy Strategy. The need to embed climate action in all strands of public policy aligns with the goals of the European Green Deal.
The policy document contains over 200 measures across various waste areas including Circular Economy, Municipal Waste, Consumer Protection and Citizen Engagement, Plastics and Packaging, Construction and Demolition, Textiles, Green Public Procurement and Waste Enforcement.
Always wondered how circular economy could help take your city or region to the next level? This webinar by the European Federation of Agencies and Regions for Energy and the Environment (FEDARENE) is for you!
Circular Change joined other Coordination Group members in several activities to encourage the participation of other relevant circular economy stakeholders in Central and Eastern Europe.
The Sustainable products initiative, which will revise the Ecodesign Directive and propose additional legislative measures as appropriate, aims to make products placed on the EU market more sustainable. You are welcome to give your feedback on it until 2 November 2020.
The EU’s Circular Economy Action Plan: setting the world’s largest single market on a transition towards a circular economy
This case study on the EU's Circular Economy Plan (CEAP) by the Ellen McArthur Foundation reflects back on the steps which the European Commission took to take a lead in circular economy policies globally. From initially aiming at improving resource efficiency, to redefining growth with positive social, environmental, and economic benefits, this case study analyses this policy-making process.
The CEAP was a comprehensive body of legislative and non-legislative actions adopted in 2015, which aimed to transition the European economy from a linear to a circular model. It mapped out 54 actions, as well as four legislative proposals on waste.
By rethinking resource efficiency and material flows, the European Commission has developed a framework to promote systemic change.
Pop Machina Research Project - Mapping the maker community ecosystem and the urban metabolism processes
The Pop-Machina project is an EU-funded research project exploring the maker movement contributions to cities’ transition to the circular economy.
This 2nd deliverable 'Mapping the maker community ecosystem and the urban metabolism processes' draws a collection of definitions to characterise the circular maker movement. A set of original tools, including a decision tree, a taxonomy, indicators and maps of the circular maker movement are developed to delineate the circular maker movement, with a focus on the Pop-Machina seven pilot cities.
Eventually, pilot story-boards present the current status of the circular maker movement in the city, with the disclosure of the circular maker passports, characterising the movement in each pilot.
The aim of Poland's Roadmap towards the Transition to the Circular Economy (CE), which was adopted in 2019, is twofold: first, to identify cross-cutting measures capable of having the broadest possible impact in Poland, both socially and economically; and second, to prioritise areas that will enable Poland to take advantage of its current opportunities, and to deal with existing or future challenges.
The Roadmap focusses on 5 areas in particular:
- Sustainable industrial production
- Sustainable consumption
- New business models
- implementation, monitoring and financing of CE.
The Roadmap includes a set of tools, which are not purely legislative, to create the conditions for a new economic model in Poland.
PCDT buys used spare parts for home appliances from individuals whose appliances cannot be repaired and will then sell thems - with no margin of profit - to customers who can use them to repair their own appliances.
The European Association of Chemical Distributors (Fecc) acknowledges the Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP) and supports the initiative for a more sustainable approach by ensuring that used resources are kept in the EU economy for as long as possible.
However, on behalf of the European chemical distribution sector, particularly the numerous SMEs it represents, Fecc would like to raise the following points:
- increasing recycled content in products while ensuring their performance and safety is paramount
- stakeholders from across the board – private companies, academia, and public bodies – can all benefit from circularity in the distribution sector
- promoting circular public procurement to empower consumers and public buyers is necessary and must be supported post-COVID-19.
In 2019 the European Commission set out a policy guideline to address global environmental challenges and circularity. EURATEX and its members welcome the ambition of the EU Institutions to change the old way and commit to engage with all relevant parties to deliver and implement a new Textile Strategy to boost the circular economy and be fit for the present and future generations.
This strategy by EURATEX is a starting point, with insights into solutions based on a 14-month consultation with members, involving over 100 companies and key stakeholders, focused on applied circular practices and future opportunities. It prioritises removing barriers to a large-scale uptake of circular economy in textiles, sets out 12 key points and puts forward 38 proposals.
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.
- Use IT products longer.
- Circularity helps maximize the value of IT investment.
- Market demand is key to accelerating the pace of change.
- Circularity includes IT management throughout the life cycle.
- Improved supply chain responsibility can speed up transition to CE.
- Circularity is a team effort.
- Many circular solutions are already in place - just use them.
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.
Holland Circular Hotspot is a private-public platform in which companies, knowledge institutes and local authorities collaborate to promote and support international collaboration and knowledge exchange on Dutch circular economy, and the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, a government agency for sustainable, agricultural, innovative and international business development and growth, have come together to share insights, networks and resources to help kickstart circular developments that will boost the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Circular examples from various market segments closely linked to SDGs such as agri-food, manufacturing and the built environment are included in the brochure next to cross-sectoral topics such as consumer goods or plastics.
Ethikis has created LONGTIME®, the first European, independent label identifying and promoting products designed to last.
Rue Rangoli is a French social enterprise that supports social organisations involved in upcycling or zero-waste and the design circular economy, based in Europe, Africa and Asia.
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.
The cleanSpot application provides users with an easy way to search for recycling centres and specialised recycling containers where they can drop off their non conventional urban waste for correct recycling.
In 2018, the Danish Ministry of Environment and Food and the Danish Ministry of Industry, Business and Financial Affairs launched a Strategy for Circular Economy, based on recommendations by an Advisory Board for Circular Economy. The strategy will be implemented in the period 2018-2022. The government launched initiatives within six thematic areas:
- Strengthening enterprises as a driving force for circular transition
- Supporting circular economy through data and digitalisation
- Promoting circular economy through design
- Changing consumption patterns through circular economy
- Creating a proper functioning market for waste and recycled raw materials
- Getting more value out of buildings and biomass.
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.
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).
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).
The circular economy's closed loop and product service systems for sustainable development: A review and appraisal
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.