3 reasons for converting to the Circular Economy
A new economic model is possible and necessary, now more than ever.
Climate changes are clear to see, with disastrous consequences for the environment and the World’s population. We can’t put it off any longer.
The time has come to reverse the course and choose a sustainable economic model for the planet and for future generations: changing from the linear economy to the Circular Economy.
In this article we present three reasons to adopt the principles of this new model and we sum up with details of our experience: a daily undertaking to translate it into a reality.
Why adopt the principles of the circular economy?
1 – IT’S TIME!
The time has come; we need to act
2015 was a “hot autumn” for the Global Climate.
On 11 December the United Nations Climate Change Conference concluded in Paris, where 195 countries met to reach an agreement leading to a reduction in emissions and a slowing down of global warming.
During the conference, on 2 December, the Vice President of the European Commision, Frans Timmermans, launched the new package for the circular economy:
Europe has for some time been on the front line of the fight against climate change and the promotion of a responsible use of the limited resources of the planet. But we need to do more. One of the challenges awaiting us consists in changing our economy from a “linear” to a “circular” model. Many natural resources are not infinite. So it is necessary to change the “take, make, use and throw away” mentality, which pervades a large part of our economy.
- (source: Now is the time for Europe to change to a Circular Economy, Frans Timmermans, Repubblica.it)
It is still possible to change course but it is a choice which can no longer be postponed.
2 – IT IS “SMART”
It is a more profitable and strategic model for the EU Member States
The linear economy is based on a process which starts with the extraction of the raw material, passes through the production of goods and concludes with the production of waste to be disposed of in a landfill. It is a process “from the cradle to the grave”, that is very costly both in economic and environmental terms.
The Circular Economy model, on the hand, maintains the materials and the value in circulation within the economic system for as long as possible: “from the cradle to the cradle”. In this system, the use of resources and the production of waste is reduced to a minimum and when a product reaches the end of its life cycle its components are reused several times to create further value.
This choice, if adopted today, can translate into a competitive advantage in the future production and consumption models, with an increase in the commercial opportunities and the creation of new jobs which will remain concentrated in Europe.
3 – IT IS WORTHWHILE
More competitiveness and a reduction in costs for European firms
The price of raw materials is increasing; recycling and recovery not only becomes necessary for the environment but also an obligatory choice in order to achieve greater competitiveness.
For this reason, the aim of the Circular Economy package is that before 2030:
- 65% of household and similar waste and 75% of packaging waste is recycled
- not more than 10% of all waste produced is processed in landfills
These actions will, together, determine a reduction in the manufacturing costs of the European firms:
The package contains more ambitious recycling objectives for paper, glass, plastic, metal and wooden packaging materials. The reason is simple: the prices of raw materials are increasing and already represent more than 30% of the cost structure of the European manufacturing industries. Increasing the objectives will represent a victory in the long term, enabling European industries which use secondary raw materials to save money
- Karmenu Vella, European Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (source: Europe aims towards circular economy, Ecoscienza, number 5, 2015)
Waste processing at the centre of the Circular Economy: the commitment of MACPRESSE
The heart of this new economic model is therefore “waste”, which is no longer to be disposed of, but a “value” which is revived thanks to the circular process.
This value translates into a mission for MACPRESSE:
for us, the expression “waste reduction” is a concept which embraces the entire management and production process: reduction of energy and manpower costs, reduction of transport and procurement costs.
Consequently, our baling presses and our waste recovery and processing systems have been designed so that only the materials which cannot actually be recycled end in landfills.
Our commitment is underlined by the decision to be present at the most important international events in the Green Economy, including the Ecomondo trade fair in Rimini, at which we had the pleasure of presenting our MAC 122 XL baler at a stand designed for discovering our main products in a dynamic and direct manner.
Paris COP21 Conference website
Europe aims towards circular economy, Ecoscienza, number 5, 2015 (Italian version)
Now is the time for Europe to change to a Circular Economy, Frans Timmermans, Repubblica.it (Italian version)
How we can make our economy circular and resource efficient? Infographic – Europa Environment Agency www.eea.europa.eu