History and Aims of Circular Economy
The idea of circular flow for materials and energy is not new, appearing as early as 1966 in the book by Kenneth E. Boulding, who explains that we should be in a "cyclical" system of production. For its part, the term "circular economy" appeared for the first time in 1988 in "The Economics of Natural Resources".
This notion was developed further, following 3 major events: the explosion of raw material prices between 2000 and 2010, the Chinese embargo on rare earth materials and the arrival of the economic crisis.
Today, the climate emergency and environmental challenges have strongly influenced and pushed companies and individuals to rethink their consumption and production patterns. One of the answers to these challenges is presented by the circular economy model.
Thus, new modes of production and consumption are emerging with the main objective of generating billions of dollars while controlling and reducing environmental consequences.
Circular development is directly linked to the circular economy and aims to build a sustainable society based on recyclable and renewable resources, in order to protect society from waste and to be able to form a model that is no longer considering resources as infinite.
This new model of economic development focuses on the production of goods and services taking into account environmental and social costs.
Circular development, therefore, supports a circular economy to create new societies in line with new waste management and sustainability objectives that meet the needs of citizens. It is about enabling economies and societies, in general, to become more sustainable.
If we fail to act and change the linear economy to a circular economy, the volume of plastic on the market will double, the annual volume of plastic entering the ocean will almost triple, and ocean plastic stocks will quadruple.
In 15 years, clothing production has doubled, but usage has dropped by 40%, and less than 1% of clothing is turned into new clothing at end of its use. The economic, health and environmental benefits of a circular economy for food alone would be worth USD 2.7 trillion a year by 2050.