COP26: To fix the climate, we need to fix the economy. Here's why.
Under the COP26 climate negotiations, leading circular economy actors urge businesses to consider new ways of designing, producing and consuming goods and their role in scaling change to meet the climate targets.
A circular economy is an opportunity and a necessity to tackle the planetary crises. Climate crisis, biodiversity loss and the over-extraction of natural resources are interlinked crises, which have a huge impact on the well-being of humans as well as the future of our economy and societies. Resource extraction and use account for 70% of all GHG emissions, which is a major driver of climate change. A circular economy provides means for major reductions in the use of virgin materials and can also help produce positive climate and biodiversity impacts.
Not only is the circular economy a tool to address these global crises – it is also a major economic opportunity to get more value with fewer materials. Businesses have an important role in fixing the climate by rethinking their business models: how they innovate, design, and produce their goods and services. Those efforts will reduce the need for virgin natural resources and create new jobs and better growth. Businesses that apply circular approaches can become more resilient by reducing their exposure to e.g. supply chain disruptions. Businesses that adopt circular practices in their business models have the opportunity to be front runners in the tie, where fixing the economy is required if we want to fix the climate.
The article was written in collaboration with some of the world’s leading circular economy actors: Anthesis, Circle Economy, Ellen MacArthur Foundation, European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform (ECESP), Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra, Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, Global Electronics Council, Metabolic, The Platform for Accelerating the Circular Economy (PACE), ReLondon, World Economic Forum.