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    Entrepreneurship in the Circular Economy: Benefits and Opportunities

    The circular economy is an economic model that offers many interests for both entrepreneurs and consumers. These interests can be found in several areas. Indeed, these benefits can be found in profitability, ecology, or innovation. There are many reasons to get started.

    More and more entrepreneurs who want to contribute to the well-being of our blue planet and take advantage of a promising job segment are entering the circular economy sector.

    Entrepreneurship in the circular economy sectors can offer several economic, environmental and social benefits. Here are some reasons why more and more entrepreneurs are choosing to enter the circular economy:

    • Reduce environmental impact: The circular economy is a model for producing goods and services with limited environmental impact. Companies that adopt circular practices can thus help reduce their environmental impact and contribute to the fight against climate change.
    • Ability to meet the needs of environmentally conscious consumers: Many consumers today are looking to minimise their environmental impact through sustainable alternatives. Businesses that rely on the circular economy model are able to meet this growing demand by offering environmentally friendly products and services to their customers. In this way, you will benefit from consumer loyalty.
    • Contribution to job creation: The circular model can create new jobs in many sectors such as recycling, construction, reuse, logistics, transport and sustainable product design.

    The Include-Ce project, a good illustration of recycling

    The Include-CE project is a good illustration of the 3rd point bulleted above. Indeed, with the development of the two training courses targeted to migrants and ethnic minorities, one on Digital Literacy and the second on Active Online Job Search, the element of recycling is embedded in the programmes from the onset, with the second-hand laptop collection, where various stakeholders are requested to donate their unused, but still good digital devices that will be passed to the project’s target groups.

    The reader following the project should know that, during the training and after its completion, the target group will themselves be promoting the circular models and inevitably include it in their everyday life.

    No sector of activity is excluded, either small or big, as the circular economy principle offers several economic, environmental and social benefits to entrepreneurs. It contributes to  the satisfaction of environmentally conscious consumers, it gives an unparalleled sense of pride, it reduces environmental impact, and it contributes to job creation.

    From Renting Furniture to Leasing Lighting: How Companies are Embracing the Circular Economy to Reduce Environmental Impact

    The rise of the circular economy brings many benefits to our societies. In particular, it reduces climate change and provides a solution to the problems of plastic pollution, excessive waste and overconsumption.

    Today, many companies have decided to opt for product purchasing strategies that ensure they improve their environmental impact and move towards a circular economy.  Turning their backs on established business practices, these organisations are focusing on innovation and revising their production models with the aim of reducing the extraction of new resources and the generation of waste.

    Here are some examples of companies that have adopted circular practices:

    • In 2017, Ikea set up a furniture rental programme, allowing its customers to rent furniture rather than buy it. After rental, the furniture is returned to Ikea, which repairs it and puts it back into rental or recycling.
    • Renault has set up a remanufacturing programme for its car parts, which consists of recovering, cleaning and repairing used parts for reuse in the production of new parts.
    • Lancôme, a brand of the L’oréal Group, launched a facial care product in a refillable glass jar in 2017. The brand offers its customers a jar and two refills. Thanks to this new proposal, a reduction in packaging weight of 58% compared to buying three traditional products.
    • Although Elis already relies on the functionality economy. The company is committed to recovering 90% of textiles and has also reduced water consumption in its laundries by almost 30% compared to 2010.
    • Philips has launched a leasing programme for its lighting products, which allows customers to rent lighting systems rather than buy them. After leasing, the products are returned to Philips, which repairs them and either leases them back or recycles them.

    These and many other companies have adopted circular practices to reduce their environmental impact and create long-term value.

    The adoption of circular practices is a crucial solution to address our environmental and economic challenges. It is essential that consumers and businesses are made aware of the benefits of this approach.

    No organization can claim to be  small, when it comes to the inclusion of the philosophy of Circular Economy in their management. We are all concerned

    Newsletter #2

     

    The second newsletter of the INCLUDE-CE project is now available!

     

    The Pros and Cons of Embracing the Circular Economy: Balancing Long-Term Benefits and Short-Term Challenges

    Neither a waste nor a recycling economy, the circular economy is a model of economy that combines a set of practices, organised according to their impacts, with the aim of maximising energy and materials.

    The circular economy  offers many non-negotiable benefits and has a very positive impact on the planet and its people.

    • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions and pollution, thus contributing to the fight against climate change.
    • Reducing the consumption of natural resources and energy, thus preserving ecosystems and limiting the impact on the environment.
    • Creating green and local jobs, especially in the field of waste collection and treatment.
    • Stimulating innovation in the design of sustainable and reusable products.
    • Reducing production costs through the reuse of materials and products, as well as reducing waste and processing costs.

     

    However, the circular economy also has some drawbacks, such as:

    • High initial costs for companies and communities to set up waste collection, sorting and treatment systems.
    • Lack of coordination and regulation between the different actors involved in the circular economy, which can lead to difficulties in setting up supply and waste recovery chains.
    • Lack of awareness and information among the general public on the challenges of the circular economy, as well as on the actions to be implemented to contribute to it.
    • Technical challenges related to the reuse and recycling of certain materials, which may be polluting or difficult to process.

     

    Despite these major challenges, the circular economy remains an important solution to our society’s environmental and economic challenges. Long-term benefits, such as conservation of natural resources and reduced production costs, can significantly outweigh the initial costs and short-term challenges.

    Circular Economy: A Sustainable and Innovative Business Model

    Circular economy is a sustainable economic model that aims to maximise the use of natural resources through a cycle of production, use and regeneration, all through the reuse, repair, recycling and regeneration of materials and products.

    The circular economy stands out from the crowd because, unlike the traditional linear economic model of ‘extract-produce-consume-throw’, it aims to minimise waste and resource loss, while promoting sustainable economic growth and job creation.

     

    The circular economy is based on the following principles:

    • Reducing the consumption of raw materials and energy
    • Favouring the use of renewable and non-toxic material
    • Promoting the design of sustainable, reusable and easily recyclable products
    • Promote the regeneration of ecosystems and natural resources.
    • Encourage the reuse, repair and recycling of products at the end of their life

     

    The implementation of the circular economy plays an important role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, preserving natural resources, creating green jobs and achieving sustainable economic growth.

     

    Where does the circular economy come from? 

    The circular economy has its origins in a convergence of disciplines and practices, ranging from economics and ecology to design and engineering. 

    Its origins date back to the 1970s, when the Swiss architect Walter Stahel developed the concept of the functionality economy, which instead of simply selling goods, recommends the use of sustainable, repairable and adaptable products and services.

    In the 1990s, the American architect and designer William McDonough developed the concept of “cradle-to-cradle”, which advocates designing products that can be recycled or regenerated at the end of their life.

    In recent years, awareness of the environmental and social impact of traditional economic models has grown significantly. This has led to the recognition of the circular economy as a sustainable and innovative business model. Today, many companies, communities and organisations are working towards the implementation of circular economic systems, with the aim of preserving natural resources and creating long-term value.

    The circular economy is a promising model that can contribute to the reduction of waste and resource loss, while promoting sustainable economic growth and job creation. In recent years, the concept has gained significant recognition as an innovative business model. Many companies and organizations are now working towards implementing circular economic systems to create long-term value while preserving natural resources. By reducing greenhouse gas emissions and promoting the regeneration of ecosystems and natural resources, the circular economy can contribute to a more sustainable future for all.

     

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    Project Number : 2022-2-MT01-KA220-YOU- 000097092

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