Closing the Loop on the Circular Economy A Need for Cooperation Across the Value Chain
SINGAPORE - July 22, 2016 - In order to be successful, a Circular Economy will require cooperation across the value chain and willingness by industry to support changes in legislation. These were two of the priorities to emerge from a roundtable event, Closing the Loop on the Circular Economy, coordinated by the European Forum for Manufacturing and held in London on July 18.
Dana Mosora, Dow Sustainability and Advocacy leader, Packaging and Specialty Plastics, participated in this important roundtable, joined by Andrew Jones, Dow UKIN regional leader and global business director, Chlor-Alkali and Vinyl. The event involved industry, government groups and business leaders seen as key contributors to the circular economy agenda. Included was keynote speaker Pierre Henry, deputy head, Eco-Innovation & Circular Economy, European Commission, who is leading the EU Circular Economy efforts. These actions contribute to \"closing the loop\" of product lifecycles through greater recycling and reuse, bringing benefits for both the environment and the economy.
The Circular Economy fits into the wider context of COP21 (Conference of the Parties on the Paris Agreement,) a global agreement on climate change reduction. COP21 is viewed as an important alternative to a traditional, linear “make, use and dispose” economy.
While creating new opportunities for growth, a more circular economy will also:
- Reduce waste
- Drive greater resource productivity
- Help reduce the environmental impacts of our production and consumption, such as marine litter and landfills
- Create new jobs
The event was facilitated by Clare Moody, Labour MEP for the South West of England and Gibraltar and appointed to negotiate the EU's new Circular Economy legislative bill tackling packaging and packaging waste. She opened the discussion noting how “manufacturing is fundamental to our economy, and opportunities lie within the circular economy for manufacturing to play a major role with redesign.”
Mosora spoke to the audience about how Dow welcomes the more holistic approach taken by the EU Commission, discussing the importance of the life cycle of products. She referenced Project REFLEX – a consortium of like-minded businesses involved in the value chain and focused on increasing recyclability of flexible packaging. To do this, each step in the value chain must be targeted – from packaging design, to collection and sorting and reprocessing.