The year 2020 has been a year of change and adaptation. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the whole world and damaged all economies. As a result, a rapid transition to a circular economy is more important than ever.
As we attempt to reboot economies while facing an increasing depletion of biodiversity and natural resources, circular solutions are key to ensuring the future prosperity of our world.
For the first time fully virtual, the World Circular Economy Forum Online is being held on 29 and 30 September 2020 to facilitate the transition to a circular economy.
Covering several time zones and geographic regions, WCEFonline will enable its participants to understand what role each of us can take to support a sustainable development.
Organised for the first time in 2017, the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra’s WCEF initiative has become a platform where decision-makers, businesses, researchers and others can work together for a more sustainable future.
Here are five reasons to attend the event.
1. Discover how policy development and financing can enable the transition to a circular economy
For a circular economy to truly become part of the system, our societies that are based on a linear economy must be rethought in many ways.
A circular economy cannot be achieved without major policy developments that, for example, support circular business models over linear business models. Recent policy tools and programmes such as the European Green Deal play an important role in supporting the transition to a circular economy. The economic viability of a circular economy is unquestionable but major financing is required to truly accelerate it.
2. Cross-sectoral and global co-operation is key to realising a circular economy
The habits of linear consumption and production are deep-rooted. A circular economy can only be realised through open and active co-operation across disciplines, sectors and nations.
By forming new partnerships and creating transparent networks we are better equipped to challenge and revamp the linear economic model. This year, our online environment offers a tool for participants to find and create new connections across the world with people wanting to accelerate the circular transition.
3. You can learn about and discuss what the journey to a circular economy looks like in different parts of the globe
The journey taken to a circular economy will not be identical for every nation or region. Three of the WCEFonline sessions will focus on three regions and their distinct situations: Europe, the Canada-US region and Africa.
The opening session of the WCEFonline will focus on policy developments in Europe that aim to accelerate a just circular economy. One session will offer an insight into how a manufacturing and resource-intensive economy can adopt circularity in the Canada-US region.
Another session will feature African business leaders and policymakers discussing how a circular economy increases inclusivity while supporting the development of a climate-resilient society.
4. Now is the time to rethink the rationale of a linear economy system
The pandemic has caused unforeseen disruptions to linear global supply chains. Faced with this new reality, companies can start to redefine their own economic rationales to match the long-term resiliency potential of circular operating models. For example, a localised closed-loop production and supply system may be less prone to supply chain shocks.
During WCEFonline we will hear from companies already exploring circular models about how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected their ambitions for circularity.
5. We will present inspiring circular economy solutions from around the globe
A circular economy is already taking place. Numerous fully operating, economically viable and thoroughly circular solutions exist. Sitra has compiled a list of some of the most inspiring circular economy solutions from around the globe. All of the 39 solutions play an important role in speeding up the transition to a circular economy and inspiring circular community.
During the WCEFonline some of those behind these solutions will give their thoughts on what is going on in the circular economy at the grass-roots level and what is needed to scale up circular economy business.
The WCEFonline is a platform for discussion, ideas and debates supporting a sustainable recovery with the circular economy. The event consists of six separate sessions, organised by Sitra and its international partners, and it covers different aspects of rebooting the economy with circular solutions.
We welcome you to engage, participate, listen, challenge and discuss with the circular community, and to learn how to build back better. The event is free of charge and open to all.