For companies that are just starting out in the world of circularity, it can be unclear exactly how to get started and what the end goal is. Business leaders might find themselves talking in circles around the topic without making any progress, especially when talking to different stakeholder groups across their company or when looking at peers in their industries. Circularity can seem like an impossible end goal, but there are strategies to help you start and move toward a circular economy.
Understanding Traditional Linear Economy vs Circular Economy
To understand the different circular economy strategies, you first must understand the current model of production, consumption, and disposal. This traditional model has been termed the linear economy. The linear economy was born out of the industrial revolution and has driven tremendous global economic growth. However, this growth has been based on the unabated conversion of the world’s natural capital to material goods, which potentially implies long-term depletion of our natural resources.
On the other hand, the circular economy seeks to remedy this imbalance by keeping our natural capital in an extended – and ideally endless - loop. Manufactured goods are repaired, reprocessed, and recycled so that the base materials can be reused. Many people think of the classic “blue jeans” example when they think of circular economy. In this example, a pair of jeans is made with sustainably sourced materials and an efficient design process. The consumer rents the jeans – meaning they will wear the jeans for as long as they like and when they are finished, they will return the jeans to be recycled. The cotton and materials used in the jeans will then be recycled and repurposed. Extending the product’s life creates jobs and energy, resources, and waste are conserved by not manufacturing something new.
Learn more about Circular Economy strategies in the full blog on Environmental + Energy Leader!
Antea Group is engaged in a wide range of circular economy forums and projects around the world, in both public and private industry. Contact Antea Group today to learn more about circular economy business strategies and how they can help you start your journey towards circularity.Contact Us and Let's Get Started
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