What is circular economy: 7 advantages for your business
People consume and make use of services and products since time immemorial. However, in recent years consumer behavior is changing. Currently, a new economic model, known as a circular economy, is gaining more and more attention. It proposes a change in our whole way of consuming. But what is circular economy?
In the business world, circular economy gained visibility since 2014. Among the various definitions given by scholars, we highlight that of Pitt and Heinemeyer, said in 2015. For him, “the circular economy is a new way of thinking about the future and how we organize our economies and societies “. For them the concept of what is circular economy for companies boils down to: “a new way of thinking about the future and how we organize our economies and societies. “
In short, the concept of circular economy is linked to the understanding of maximization the functioning of ecosystems and human well-being.
Also, within the concept of sustainable economy you also have a wide range of projects that can have a profile 100% focused on sustainability. If you are interested in this model, we suggest you read the exclusive material produced by Eadbox: See why invest in sustainable business ideas.
What is circular economy: the new flow of the economy
The format in which we were accustomed to consuming – the linear, based on the process of withdrawing from nature-produce-discard – is being left behind. The concept of circular economy is exactly the opposite of this format.
This is because the linear format does not consider the fact that raw materials can be extinguished – or what to do in the final process. Meaning: what to do with what is discarded?
Already the understanding of what is circular economy proposes a new vision, that the resources extracted and produced are kept in circulation. Such as? Through integrated production chains. The goal is to eliminate the idea of the existence of garbage.
In the concept of circular economy for companies all material can still be used. Hence it is defined as a cyclical flow, without end. Thus, there is an intelligent use of existing resources. People are becoming more concerned about the environment, balanced forms of consumption and production formats.
What are the advantages of circular economy?
Now that you’ve learned what circular economics is. Let’s see its advantages.
This format of thinking and consumption offers benefits on broad scales. This is because it aims to keep the products, its other components and materials in circulation making the most of its values and utility.
In this way, it aids in innovation, the generation of new jobs, economic growth and in the population’s thinking – that it begins to consume with greater caution and attention.
Some of the many benefits of circular economy for business can be highlighted as follows:
- Elimination of waste, a recyclable production does not waste its raw materials;
- Less pollutionin both production and disposal – which also results in an improvement in the quality of life for all those involved in the company;
- Use of newnatural products to make products;
- Reduction of costs, the extraction of raw materials will be less;
- Innovation and improvement incompany processes;
- Well-being andemployee engagement. One of the tips for managing teams is building elements of pride in working in a place that is concerned about the future and doing its part;
- Strengthening the company’s image infront of the market. In addition to having satisfied and engaged employees, the company would also gain authority with customers and suppliers who feel rewarded for doing business with a company engaged in environmental responsibility projects.
These are just a few of the examples of the real effective impact that the circular economy offers for companies. And these are the reasons why this new conception is adopted globally and gaining attention.
To ensure that the company achieves the goal of implementing the concept of circular economy, it must invest in the awareness and social involvement of all its employees. Some suggestions are:
- Develop curricular programs
- Teaching materials
- Information actions
- Other resources that help in the understanding and importance of this new format of consumption
The major problems of scheduled obsolescence
One of the struggles that the circular economy proposes is with the programmed obsolescence of products, that is, items that could still have a useful life ahead, but that become obsolete – due to software updates, new collections, etc.
Programmed obsolescence generates waste that does not receive new uses and accumulate exponentially. In addition to obsolescence, the depletion of raw materials is also a concern. So, instituting the circular economy has been gaining ground.
In the concept of circular economy, it is believed that these products must undergo reuse, re-manufacturing and reconditioning. Thus, they start to have their extended life cycle.
To facilitate we picked an example. When a smartphone has become obsolete. It goes back to the factory where it was produced, is disassembled, optimized and marketed again. If this happens, the economy profits from the absence of waste – just like the environment.
Therefore, in the circular economy, it is proposed that products and services are designed to have longer life cycles. Ecologically efficient and economically viable. Thus, products that are more durable and use less resources are made.
To do this, you need to pay attention from the initial idea of the project, through the phases of:
- Initial Design
- Elimination – or, better, re-entry of the product into the cycle.
All these steps must be thought in order to value natural capital and avoid waste, but in all of them it is possible to put this into practice.
It is up to the company to define this as one of its priorities and to invest accurately at all stages.
The role of consumers in the circular economy
To change the production format, it is also necessary to change the form of consumption. Companies that become more ecologically concerned should reap the rewards of consumption.
For this, consumers need to know what circular economy is and choose, when possible, to consume from companies that have these clear concerns.
It is also up to the market to worry about unbridled consumption. The client must become more aware and politicize his role in the concept of circular economy. It is he who can make a product last longer following the care indicated by the company, for example.
Is your company already part of the great hall of corporations that believe and invest in the circular economy?
Investing to have a better planet in the future should be a concern of our generation. Big companies already understood this importance and adopted this form of thinking and production.
You do not have to think too hard to know that recycling is the most appropriate option to meet the consumption needs of a population that grows, but that counts on a decrease in natural resources.
Does your company already think this way? What do you think of the concept of circular economy? Share with us your impressions about this new thinking format.
This content was produced by Eadbox. We are complete and intuitive distance learning platform that can help your work towards the dissemination of an organizational culture that encourages sustainability through employee development and training. Talk to one of our consultants and learn how we can help you develop your business policies.