Waste hierarchy essential for circular economy (ICWM – Pisa, 2015)

Waste hierarchy accoding to www.recycling.nl
Waste hierarchy accoding to www.recycling.nl

De staff of the Third International Conference on Waste Management (ICWM) invited me to present in Pisa at the Scuola Superiore Sant’ Anna my view on the relation between the Ladder van Lansink and the concept of circular economy. My presentation was the second speech of the morning session at 18th june 2015 with the main theme: Waste management and circular economy: a critical analysis. Using the powerpoint-presentatie ‘From waste– to resource-management’ I explained, that the broad accepted waste hierarchy is essential for the implementation of any concept of circular economy. Useful instruments on the way from waste- to resource management are: Introduction of effective recycling schemes; application of economic instruments (e.g. taxes); strengthening of producer responsibility besides green public procurement; research and development policy (innovation); integration of prevention andrecycling in permitting procedures; integration of environmental criteria in product regulation; and of course sustainable (or eco-)design according to Cradle to Cradle. I especially underlined the ‘circular dilemma’s:

Scheme of circular economy according to WRAP
Scheme of circular economy from http://atrscorp.com/the-circular-economy-explained/

* Control by Government against producer Responsibility

* Fiscal measures or the power of free market

* Binding (eco)directives or freedom for products

* National policy or international cooperation

* Lease society against the right of individuals to  ownership

* Local or regional market against continental markets

For the near future the following  keywords remain important: prevention on the first place, furthermore and re-use of products and materials after recycling. Ecodesign has to be focussed on resource management. Meanwhile: saving materials and energy needs steady attention, in spite of the also necessary promotion of sustainable energy to reduce CO2-emissions. Innovation in technology and logistics remains also an important challenge. Finally, I mention the mixed and shared responsibility of producers, consumers (even ‘prosumers’) and government (legal framework and stimulation programs).

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