More and more, circular economic models are providing ways for governments and businesses to increase efficiency, reduce waste and create new jobs. Two new initiatives in the UK reinforce that adopting circular principles presents significant economic opportunities for businesses.
The London Waste and Recycling Board (LWARB) has approved a new £50 million business plan for the period of 2017–2020 to help reinvigorate London’s recycling efforts and accelerate the development of the circular economy in the capital.
Global fresh water demand is expected to grow by 2 percent yearly over the next several decades. Based on the assumption that water supply will remain relatively stable, demand growth is expected to lead to serious water stress. This is largely the result of a linear model of water usage, in which the resource becomes more polluted and increasingly wasted as it travels through the system, shortening the water cycle.
As a humanist, Bill Gates has been on something of a roll. Recently, he launched Breakthrough Energy Ventures, a $1 billion fund for startups working on promising sustainable energy solutions. This isn’t actually that much money compared to what’s needed for a game-changing solution, but Breakthrough Energy will be only part of the funding picture, and $1 billion is undoubtedly a real boost.
President Donald Trump issued two executive orders last week geared at scaling back or replacing financial regulations that he deems a burden to commerce and growth.
The move signals a big win for Wall Street —whose elite are up for top spots in Trump’s cabinet — and comes at the expense of the working class. It exposes investors and the average American to a less-regulated landscape reminiscent of the pre-financial crisis era — and the risks that go along with it.
By the year 2050, nearly 80% of the earth’s population will live in urban centers and that number will have increased by about 3 billion people in the interim – a big challenge and opportunity to feed. One emergent model is indoor farming, aka, vertical farming.
Columbia professor Dickson D. Despommier, Ph.D., (now emeritus) at Columbia University Medical School authored “The Vertical Farm: Feeding the World in the 21st Century,” published in 2010, and is credited with mainstreaming the term vertical farming.
Energy companies are grossly underestimating low-carbon advances with a business-as-usual approach says a new report co-authored by the Grantham Institute at Imperial College London and the Carbon Tracker Initiative.
The report also points to the falling costs of electric vehicle and solar technology as having the potential to halt the growth in global demand for oil and coal from 2020, challenging the wisdom of backing fossil fuel expansion.
As the Trump administration threatens to withdraw the US from the Paris Agreement and double up on efforts to revive a slowing fossil fuels industry, the rest of the world is pulling out of coal projects and redirecting investment towards renewables in an effort to make good on climate pledges.
Less than a week after its release, the European Commission’s new Roadmap for the EU Strategy on Plastics in a Circular Economy is already coming under fire. According to the Break Free From Plastic Movement, the roadmap fails to get to the root of the plastic problem, and threatens to divert Europe down a less direct — and significantly slower — pathway towards attaining its sustainability goals.
The business case for sustainability, particularly the circular economy, is a strong one, and more and more researching is backing it up. A recent report by the Business & Sustainable Development Commission pointed to sustainable business models as the key to unlocking trillions of dollars in economic opportunities, and WRAP revealed that brands across the UK saved over £100 million simply by reducing food waste.
A new report by the Business & Sustainable Development Commission (the Commission) points to sustainable business models as the key to unlocking US$12 trillion in economic opportunities and creating up to 380 million jobs a year by 2030.
New research from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) warns that the UK risks failing to meet its climate obligations without the help of small businesses.
FSB’s latest report, The Price of Power: Energising small business in the next UK Carbon Plan, shows how with improved incentives and fewer barriers, small firms can be key to closing the carbon gap. It calls on the Government to produce urgently a new carbon plan that includes a specific strategy on crucial areas such as microgeneration and energy efficiency across the UK’s small business community.
Can capitalism be ethical? This was the question asked by Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, in a recent lecture in Cambridge (part of Murray Edwards College’s Capitalism on the Edge series). He argued that while capitalism may unarguably deliver ethically desirable outcomes – such as innovations in health and less onerous work – it cannot be ethical per se if, at its core, it is about the ownership of property and its exchange for profit. Such a system, he argued, can’t generate systematic, sustainable answers to questions of social good and therefore be ethical.
The City of Las Vegas recently announced it has achieved its goal to draw 100 percent of power for its city facilities from renewable energy sources.
As of December 9, the city is powering more than 140 facilities — including all city government buildings, parks, recreation centers, streetlights and traffic signals — through a combination of direct generation and renewable energy credits.
A recent report by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and a number of new initiatives sweeping Europe have highlighted the convincing business case for companies to adopt circular principles into their business models. The latest development on the path to a circular economy? A new project across the UK and the Netherlands called REBus.
There’s growing evidence around the efficacy of a circular economy and the key role it will play in helping companies and nations carry out the commitments outlined in the Paris Climate Agreement, maintain competitive economies, and reduce waste and consumption of natural resources. The journey to a circular economy will be a long one, and it will require cooperation between businesses, local governments, investors and individuals around the world.
A new report has found that adopting circular economic principles would put India on a path to positive regenerative and value-creating development with annual benefits of US $624 billion in 2050 compared with the current development — equivalent to 30% of India’s current GDP.
The London Waste and Recycling Board (LWARB) - a partnership between the Mayor of London and London’s Boroughs dedicated to improving waste and resource management within the capital, with the aim of turning London into a circular city - has launched a new program called Advanced London to support SMEs in adopting and scaling up circular business models.
Since the signing of the Paris agreement, more and more initiatives are emerging and making waves in terms of carbon reduction. However, our planet is much more complicated than a carbon cycle, in fact, there are nine planetary boundaries to look out for from biodiversity to land system change and our current way of doing business is on the trajectory of trespassing many of them.
The European Commission has approved an investment package of €222.7 million from the EU budget to support Europe's transition to a more sustainable and low-carbon future. The EU funding will spur additional investments leading to a total of €398.6 million, which will be used to finance 144 new projects in 23 member states.
The support comes from the LIFE Programme for the Environment and Climate Action, the EU's funding instrument for the environment and climate action. €323.5 million will go to projects in the field of environment and resource efficiency, nature and biodiversity, and environmental governance and information.