What is a Circular Economy and How Does it Work?

The circular economy supports sustainability by enabling economic growth without greater resource use.
“The Basics” provides essential knowledge about core business sustainability topics. Companies sold 1.52 billion smartphones worldwide in 2019. Meanwhile, almost half of American smartphone users reported upgrading their phones before the phones stopped working. And almost all discarded phones go to landfills. This is a common pattern in our current “linear economy,” where we take materials to make something and then get rid of it when we’re done using it. The linear economy is a system that assumes that our supply of resources is infinite and that the Earth can absorb all our waste. This approach has real costs, for businesses and the planet. Those landfilled phones, for example, are full of valuable materials. A tonne of iPhones delivers 300 times more gold than a tonne of gold ore. The linear economy doesn’t capture that value. Instead, the old phones become waste and companies manufacture new phones in a resource- and energy-intensive process.

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Newtown has Potential to Become UK’s Circular Economy Capital

An independent development trust and social enterprise which delivers sustainable community projects to benefit Newtown has the potential to make the town the circular economy capital of the UK. That’s the opinion of Montgomeryshire MP Craig Williams who met officers Stuart Owen and Adam Kennerley from Open Newtown to hear about the company’s current and incubating projects. Open Newtown, which manages 140 acres of green space in Newtown, delivers sustainable community projects with the aim making the town a viable and vibrant place to live, work and visit. With Newtown Town Council, the company has developed a new destination play park and a BMX Pump Track and Mountain Bike Trail and is currently building a £1.5 million Riverside Venue, which will open up the River Severn and surrounding parkland to visitors and local residents, with canoe access points, nature/heritage trails and a forest/river school.

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Circular economy ‘key’ to meeting EU’s climate targets

Transitioning to a circular economy would support the EU’s efforts to reach climate neutrality by 2050, according to a recent Ellen MacArthur Foundation policy paper. The recently published policy paper A climate-neutral and circular industry for Europe, which the Foundation has co-authored with experts from the Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP), demonstrates the importance of the circular economy to the EU’s ability to meet its climate targets, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation says. The Foundation has also offered a series of recommendations that it says will enable the EU to ‘accelerate the transition to a circular economy’.

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Living in the EU: Circular economy | Epthinktank | European Parliament

Circular economy is a production and consumption model that involves reusing, repairing, refurbishing and recycling existing materials and products to keep materials within the economy. It implies that waste becomes a resource, consequently minimising the actual amount of waste. The circular model is generally the antithesis of a traditional, linear economic model, which is based on a ‘take-make-consume-throw away’ pattern. This paper looks at the job creation potential and added value produced by the circular economy and illustrates the generation and treatment of waste in the EU.

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