Everything You Need To Know About Circular Economy
To deal with the issue of sustainability, intellectuals have come up with an innovative idea of the Circular Economy. It happens to be one of the most essential inventions which aims for betterment of society.
"A great idea is simply the combination of many good ideas" - John C Maxwell
What is Circular Economy?
It is the concept which focuses on making the environment comparatively sustainable. It derives its origin from the "cyclical system of production" mentioned first in the year 1988.
In simple words, it is the prevention of biodiversity loss by using techniques such as reuse, recycling, refurbishing, sharing and much more. It is totally different from linear economy which is one of the prime reasons for wastage.
It not only challenges the existing practice but also proposes a better solution with a aim of "zero wastage"
There are many elements in the practice.
Examples of Circular Economy
Here are some of the recent examples in order to understand the concept better.
1. Use of Biodegradable Beer Bottles
A very good example of Circular Economy is the invention and use of biodegradable beer bottles. Most parts of the world has high beer consumption.
Therefore a major change can be brought if the beer bottles were targeted. Carlsberg company under its Carlsberg Circular Community, put forward the proposal of biodegradable Beer Bottles.
Carlsberg group along with Danish company ecoXpac, Innovation fund of Denmark and the Technical University of Denmark invented beer bottles made up of wood fibre.
These bottles are 100% biodegradable and recyclable
2. Re-use of Old Bricks
Another fine example is the reuse of old bricks. Bricks are the foundation of any building or construction.
Therefore it needs regular mass production which needs a lot of labour/ energy and causes carbon emission. In order to deal with this problem, "Gamle Mursten'' came up with the idea of reuse of Old Bricks.
The reuse of old bricks saves 95% of energy that would be wasted in production of new bricks.
The old bricks are first cleaned with vibration technology and later are manually checked before being piled up.
3. Utilisation of waste by Industries
Kalundborg Symbiosis or industrial symbiosis is one of the best examples of zero wastage. The concept of this symbiosis involves the use of an industry's residual product by another industry.
Hence it is a collaboration between companies to produce zero waste. Some of the companies involved in this practice include big companies such as Novo Nordisk, Kalundborg Utility, Novozymes and many more.
These are some of the very important and fine examples of the practice of Circular Economy.
Principles of Circular Economy
The Circular Economy is based on principles and methods of working. The four main principles are as follows:
Use of Renewable resources for energy
A major part of the economy is dependent on resources which are exhaustive or cannot sustain to fulfil the needs of future generations.It is important to remember that once these resources are exhausted, it will nearly become impossible to regenerate them, thus being heavily dependent on these resources will first exhaust them and then destabilise the existing system when they are exhausted.
Some of the non renewable resources of energy are oil, coal, nuclear energy, natural gas and others.Therefore instead of being dependent on these resources, the Circular Economy prioritises renewable energy for energy resources. Renewable energy has no chances of being exhausted in the near future, other than this it is also known to be eco friendly which causes minimum pollution as a matter of fact. Some of the renewable resources of energy are solar energy, wind energy, water energy, phosphate, limestone and others.
Policy of Reuse and Recycle
Reusing and Recycling is the reason that such an idea came into existence. In simple words the concept believes that any commodity that is produced should not be discarded after single use, it can be later reused by recycling it to a new product with different use.
This practice forms the base of the whole idea. Thus the cyclic system works on the policy of Reuse and Recycle.
Reducing Wastage in all forms
The whole purpose of coming up with an idea of Circular Economy is to make the world more sustainable so that the upcoming generation does not have to struggle in order to meet their requirements. Sustainability demands genuine use of resources/ goods and saving them.
We can save resources/ goods only if we focus on not wasting them. Therefore another important principle is Zero wastage. It condemns wastage made in any form, whether resource or goods.
Elimination of Pollution
What is the point of saving resources if they cannot survive the environment?
Saving resources through different mediums such as reuse, recycle, zero wastage and others can make it last for a longer period but the environment may have a negative effect on its sustainability.
In order to avoid such effects, it is important to prevent all kinds of pollution. There should be no pollution in air, water, land and others.
This step will have a positive effect on the lives of people and animals along the resources whose sustainability would observe positive growth. Thus the elimination of pollution is another important principle of the Circular Economy.
These are the four important principles which forms the base of such practice.
Technological Cycles vs. Biological Cycles
Circular Economy involves two very important aspects, they are technological aspects as well as Biological aspects. They are termed as Technological Cycle and Biological Cycle.
The technological cycle of Circular Economy involves the reuse or recycle or refurbishing of any commodity. Whereas the Biological cycle deals with ecosystem and renewable resources. It majorly focuses on consumption which is a part of the biological cycle.Hence this is the distinction between Technological Cycle and Biological Cycle of Circular Economy.
Prime Focus or the aims of the Circular Economy
The Prime focus or the aims of the Circular Economy are as follows:
Sustainability for a better future
The main aim or objective of the Circular Economy is sustainability for the future. Resources around are exhausting and it is doubtful that it can fulfil the needs of future generations. Hence it works for a better tomorrow. A tomorrow where people still have access to resources.
Regeneration of resources
Another important aim is to regenerate the lost resources. Exhaustive resources such fossil fuels and others cannot be regenerated but they can be preserved with generous use.On the other hand, resources such as forest and others are regenerated under the policies of the Circular Economy such as afforestation.
The Circular Economy came into existence in order to achieve these aims and objectives.
Circular Economy and Sustainability
Circular Economy and Sustainability are related to each other. Sustainability is the driving force behind the practice of Circular Economy.
Things tend to last longer if the The idea of reusing something helps in better utilisation of any commodity. The key concept along with the Scientific Discipline strategies coordinate together for future sustainability and better use of goods.
It is hence Circular Economy and Sustainability which led to the commencement of such a practice.
Need for industries to adopt the practice of Circular Economy
Industries and factories are aware that the "take make dispose" policy causes immense wastage. Therefore in order to use the resources efficiently, industries are adopting the practice of Circular Economy. Thus some of the reasons or the needs for industries to adopt the practice are as follows:
Responsibility towards the Environment
Human survival is possible because of the atmosphere and the environment which provides living conditions. Hence it is the duty of responsible citizens to make sure that our ecosystem remains un polluted.
It is the responsibility of every single person, when we look at a wider perspective, it is also the responsibility of every industry and production unit to produce maximum pollution in any form (air, water, land, etc).
Therefore one of the needs for industries to adopt the practice of Circular Economy is to keep the environment healthy.
Elimination of Waste
The disposal of waste produced from factories is a major change. Waste disposed in any form causes pollution. The only way out of this is the reuse of the residue of factories instead of considering them waste.
The idea of Industrial Symbiosis is one of the policies of the Circular Economy. The concept of Industrial Symbiosis is based on the idea of reuse of waste hence it promotes efficient use of resources.
It solves the problem of accumulation of waste and the pollution caused by it. Thus reduction in waste is another major reason why industries should consider adopting this new concept
Use of Renewable Energy
Most of the running industries are dependent on non- renewable or exhaustive sources of energy. This dependence can prove to be a major issue because these resources cause pollution and along with that, they don't carry a sense of security because they can be exhausted at any point. Circular Economy promotes the use of non renewable resources of energy such as solar energy, wind energy, water energy and others. These resources are eco friendly and dependable.
Hence another reason for adopting such a practice is shifting from non renewable resources of energy to renewable resources. These are some of the major reasons or needs for industries to adopt this practice
Use of Circular Economy in everyday life
It is said that we get used to any concept only if we use it on a regular basis or in our everyday life. Therefore some of the Use of Circular Economy in everyday life are as follows:
Right use of Water
The necessity of water is known to all. From industries to houses, everywhere water is considered to be the most essential thing. If we just focus on household needs, water is used in many different things such as washing, cooking, cleaning, bathing and others. Therefore the commencement of this practice starts in everyday life when we start with saving the most essential thing of our household, water. Hence saving water, preventing water wastage and generous use of water are the application of Circular Economy in everyday life.
Use of Eco Friendly Products
"Revolution starts with you". Most of us talk about change but only a few of us actually become a part of that change. Change starts with us and in order to bring change in the economy, we should first bring a change in ourselves and our habits.
For a sustainable future, we must start using eco- friendly products. Eco friendly goods such as recyclable bottles, bamboo toothbrushes, jute bags, biodegradable pads, and others which do not negatively impact the environment or the ecosystem.
Use the things around you
The best way to avoid wastage is to use the things you have around instead of purchasing new products. We often tend to overlook the things we have around and buy new things even though we can work with the things we have.
This practice prevents wastage as well as saves the charges of buying new products. This also leads to the efficient use of goods in one way or in multiple ways. Therefore efficient use of goods around you is another use of the Circular Economy in everyday life.These are some of the many examples of using the Circular economy in everyday life.
Circular Economy in Waste Management
Every year more than 90 billion tonnes of primary matter is produced. Out of such a huge quantity produced, only 9% of it is recycled , rest is disposed of or is considered to be waste. Wastage in bulk is hence harmful for the environment and is also exhausting the resources. One of the prime motives of the Circular Economy is "zero wastage". A great emphasis is put on efficient utilisation of goods It has put forward a roadmap for utilisation of goods.
It also talks about proper disposal of waste or waste management so that it causes minimum impact on the ecosystem and reduces pollution.
Benefits of Circular Economy
Circular economy ensures a better and a sustainable future where the future generation will face no difficulty in fulfilling their needs.
Circular economy strongly promotes the efficient and generous use of goods. The concept believes that a commodity should be used until it is not exploited completely. This move not only saves the charges of buying new products but also insurance minimum wastage.
Some sectors are:
Benefits the Economy
The Circular Economy benefits the economy by creating new jobs and boosting economic growth.
Talking about the Business sector, the profit margin increases whereas the waste is handled in a better way according to the policy of Industrial Symbiosis.
Benefits the Consumers
Circular economy is also beneficial for consumers as they reduce the ownership cost. A person need not buy a product many times, they can reuse old products again.
Benefits the Environment
Circular economy benefits the environment by causing less pollution and less wastage. Thereby making the economy clean and pollution free.
These are some of the many benefits of the Circular Economy.
Barriers of circular Economy
Some of the barriers in the path of implementation of Circular Economy are as follows:
Disruption in Employment pattern
Circular economy sees a sudden change in the employment pattern as the work sector shifts from mining and manufacturing to the recycling sector.
This major change demands proper training along with acute knowledge about the particular sector. Therefore the sudden disruption in the employment pattern is a major negative effect or a challenge for the Circular Economy.
No proper Standardisation
Circular economy has certain goals and methods but it has no prominent guidelines or a proper framework which defines the actions along with the consequences which follow.
Does not talk about Social Sustainability
Lack of attention given to Social Sustainability is another very important negative effect of the Circular Economy. In a society it is quite essential to consider social factors which affect the people living in it.
Circular Economy emphasises more on the future than the current population.
Lack of knowledge about Circular Economy among the common people
The proper implementation of any policy for the economy demands cooperation from common people as well. Another very important barrier in the path of implementation of circular economy is lack of knowledge about the policies among the common mass.
These are some of the few barriers in the path of implementation of Circular Economy
Circular Economy is one of the most brilliant ideas which not only focuses on the economy but also the ecosystem we live in. The idea demands proper implementation on a wider platform.
If implemented efficiently, it will generate good employment and give rise to a cleaner and greener ecosystem. Therefore the idea is unique and new. It is sure to bring in revolution in industries as well in the ecosystem.
Thus this article has covered everything You Need To Know About this practice.