As viewed in Module 1, circular economy is restorative and regenerative by design. This means materials constantly flow around a “closed loop” system, rather than being used once and then discarded. In the case of plastic, this means simultaneously keeping the value of plastics in the economy, without leakage into the natural environment.
The challenge is to keep matters or products and here plastic in the economy as long as feasibly possible. This includes:
The video below shows the vision that circular economy has about plastics. It explains the current problems that plastics represent and the potential danger that comes from overuse of it. Listen carefully to the 6 key points developed in this video.
Source: Akenji, L., Bengtsson, M., Kato, M., Hengesbaugh, M., Hotta, Y., Aoki-Suzuki, C., Gamaralalage, P.J.D. & Liu, C. (2019).
In short here are the 5 key points of how CE envisions a better future:
This requires cooperation of actors all along the circular chain.
Let’s take for example the key point 4 “All plastic packaging is effectively reused, recycled or composted in practice”:
Or key point 6 “All plastic packaging is free from hazardous chemicals, and the health, safety, and the right of all people involved are respected”. This requires cooperation of:
Each actor, at his level has to think according to “R” principles. The first principle to take into account being the one at the top of this pyramid, then if not possible the second, etc.
Go back to Module 1 for more details if needed.
Source: Ecores (2021) – Scheme based on waste hierarchy of the European Waste Framework Directive.