Basic Concepts of Circular Economy
The circular economy is an alternative to the traditional linear economic model, which is based on resource extraction, goods production, consumption and waste disposal. Instead, the circular economy seeks to change this model towards more closed and regenerative systems, in which waste is converted into resources and the use of materials and energy is minimized.
To achieve this, the circular economy focuses on the design of closed production and consumption systems, in which efficiency in the use of resources is maximized and waste generation is minimized. This is achieved through strategies such as the reuse of materials and products, recycling, repair and remanufacturing, and the disposal of waste through biological or chemical processes.
The circular economy is also based on collaboration and communication between all actors in the supply chain, from suppliers to consumers, to maximize efficiency in the use of resources and minimize waste at all stages of the supply cycle life of a product.
Below, we summarize some of the basic concepts of this economic system.
1. Product life cycle: The circular economy focuses on the entire life cycle of a product, from its design and production to its use and eventual recycling or reuse.
2. Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle: The circular economy seeks to reduce the amount of resources used in production, promote the reuse of products and materials, and increase the amount of materials that are recycled.
3. Service economy: The circular economy is based on a service economy model in which companies do not sell products but services, which promotes reuse and repair instead of planned obsolescence.
4. Design for circularity: the design of products and systems must consider their ability to be reused, repaired and recycled, in order to maximize their useful life and minimize their environmental impact.
5. Circular Supply Chain: A circular supply chain focuses on collaboration and communication between all the actors in the chain to maximize efficiency in the use of resources and minimize waste.
6. Technological innovation: the circular economy encourages technological innovation to develop solutions that promote efficiency in the use of resources and waste reduction.
7. Public-private cooperation: the circular economy requires collaboration between the public and private sectors to develop policies and strategies that foster the circular economy and promote technological innovation.
In short, the circular economy seeks to transform the economy towards a more sustainable model, in which efficiency in the use of resources is maximized and the environmental impact of production and consumption is minimized.