The circular economy has revolutionised the way in which waste is reused and continues within the product life cycle. The aim: to achieve a link between a well-functioning economy and sustainability, based on an efficient use of resources.
Companies are increasingly integrating the circular economy into their goods production systems. A recent example is Endesa, which applies this model to its entire value chain, from procurement to end products.
A benchmark that has been operating since 2017 is the Calvo Zero Waste project of the Calvo Group. Its objective is to recover 100% of the waste generated in all the Group’s factories and offices.
But beyond its application in industrial plants, it is also applicable to very diverse cases:
- Tyres to make new roads
- Waste to furnish shops
- Recycled plastic for clothing and accessories
- Personal car rentals
- Recycled materials for house construction
The methods for transforming this waste into a new life are very diverse, ranging from chemical to biological recycling, using products and ways to make it as fast as possible and in the least polluting way.
An exponential and continuous advance is the eco-design of plastics in products to facilitate their recycling, so that the processes for their reuse are easier and faster, reducing costs and making the product’s life cycle more agile.
The industries leading the way in bioplastics innovation are:
- Healthcare – 27%
- Packaging – 10%
- Cosmetics and detergents – 9%
- Automotive – 2%
- Construction – 1.5%
- Agriculture – 1%
Source: European Partner Office
Apart from the great economic benefits of the circular economy within companies and for the individual use of each person, its properties are not only limited to the economic aspect, but also have a great implication for the environment:
- A reduction in global emissions
- Reduced waste production
- Reduced environmental impact
- Reduced carbon footprint
It is not only private entities that opt for these models to achieve monetary and environmental purposes, but also public bodies advocate their inclusion in their modus operandi. A clear example is the project promoted by the Xunta de Galicia, with a circular economy strategy applied to the Sergas, with the aim of ensuring a more sustainable public health system, which aims to achieve a 60% reduction in emissions by 2030.
If this circular economy model were not applied, in 2050 we would need one and a half planets to exist in the same way as we do now.