Time to Transition
A boost for the circular economy.
Dutch bank ING released a report that suggests that now is the optimal time to invest in new business models before prices rise. Current low costs of raw materials, fueled by cheap oil prices present an advantageous time to make the shift towards a circular economy.
ING senior economist and author of the report, Jurjen Witteveen, said: “The design phase is critical – a culture shift towards creating products that are easily recycled or remanufactured will take us one step closer to a circular economy – manufacturers should take advantage of the current low price window and invest in strategies to create a more efficient supply chain.”
In their report, ING argue that an increase in recycling rates is not enough, but instead it will be crucial for products to be designed in a way that they can be easily dismantled for remanufacturing to extend a product’s life cycle and value.
The Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s recent Growth Within report reveals that Europe is heavily reliant on imported resources and materials. It also brought to light that there are significant opportunities for businesses and governments in Europe to change their mode of growth by choosing to maximise existing assets. The report uses circular economy models to demonstrate that technological developments can experience an additional 7% GDP growth compared with the current developmental path.
bio-bean’s work provides UK companies with an option to not only recycle their waste coffee grounds but also to purchase biomass pellets used for heating buildings. This provides a local solution to the huge volumes of biomass imported from North America.
For more information on how cheap material prices offer a circular economy opportunity visit The Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s online circular economy news page, Circulate, here, and for a wider view of circular economy please visit Circulate’s homepage here.