The European Commission aims to push forward the concepts of “recycle, repair and re-use” and waste avoidance with its Circular Economy Package. The rationale behind a circular economy is to keep resources in use for as long as possible by looking at the complete life cycle of a resource – from extraction to product design, production and consumption to waste management.
The aim is to minimize both material input and waste generation by resource-saving product design (eco-design) and by recycling and re-using products and materials turning waste into a resource again. To comply with the Package many EU countries will need a completely new waste treatment system, and many companies will need to re-think some established business models. For businesses, the transition to a circular economy will likely include costs and risks, but can also lead to new business opportunities for companies making and exporting circular economy-relevant products and services.
Adriana Neligan evaluates in this issue of Director Notes - a publication series by The Conference Board - the EU Circular Economy Package. It provides facts on the status quo of the circular economy efforts within the European Union and outlines some of the risks and opportunities for companies.
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