Chemical at the centre of the circular economyEvery year, researchers calculate overshoot days. It is the day when our demand for resources consumes what the earth can renew in a year. A date that should coincide with December 31 and that always arrives earlier.
Rethinking progress: the foundations of the circular economy
The current industrial process is based on a linear concept:
take → manufacture → use → throw.
Waste is the result of this production system.
The circular economy redefines growth to create economic but also natural and social capital. It focuses on the benefits for the whole society and not just for the individual. The key to the circular economy is to redesign production starting from waste which becomes a new resource. It is based on three clear principles:
- plan waste and pollution
- produce durable products and materials
- regenerate natural systems.
The progressive pauperization of the planet and its renewable resources requires radical innovation. Climate change is causing fires, floods, damage to crops and the environment worldwide. Last but not least, the latest health emergency that has touched the fragility of a system that is no longer sustainable can also be blamed for careless use of resources.