As of the awareness of society, the population has been seeking more and more recyclable products so that there is no aggression to the environment. Thus, a new economic model started to be developed, which meets the current expectations to meet global needs in the future.
The circular economy emerged with the purpose of innovating the value chain, becoming the solution to minimize the consumption of natural resources and energy losses without resulting in loss of efficiency and product quality.
The world's production model follows the order of extraction, production, and disposal, called the Linear Economy, which generates billions of tons of waste every year.
With global warming and frequent environmental pollution, it has become necessary to create and migrate companies to a new system based on the action of reuse, thus avoiding the use of new natural resources.
The sustainable production model named Circular Economy was then created, which is based on the continuous process of recycling and absorption of any material. Its idea is that nothing becomes waste anymore, but that everything is reused.
Its proposal is to make the resources of economic activities infinite, eliminating the waste stage of the production system.
The circular economy path is a cyclical process that begins with the reuse of material for production, which is then used, reused, remade, and recycled, thus returning to the state of use. In this way production is based on an infinite circle based on reuse.
The circular economy has become a sustainable economic solution working in the present for a good result in the future through a new line of thinking that does not disassociate economic growth from ecology, and consequently from human welfare in the growing consumption of new resources.
The idea is that there is an intelligent use of the resources that are already in use in the production process. Their carcass and waste are raw materials for new processes, products, or materials that can be repaired to be used again while maintaining their quality or a higher one.
Digital technology also supports the circular economy. It is through it that there is a significant and increasing increase in the use of virtual products, avoiding materialization, i.e., avoiding spending on raw materials.
Difference between Linear Economy and Circular Economy
In the linear system, the production process is based on limited resources, which generates the risk of exhaustion of raw materials. With this, the population suffers from increased prices, because with fewer resources available, the cost of extraction and of the final product becomes higher, in addition to the process itself becoming more aggravating to nature.
After the use of products, comes the moment when the consumer is faced with the stage of disposal, which generates a volume of unused and potentially toxic waste for humans and natural systems. This action results in global warming, pollution, deforestation, and the depletion of natural resources, in other words, what the Linear Economy generates, the Circular Economy prevents.
As the economy of companies depends on the high consumption of their products, the tendency is to always increase the number of production, which causes a larger amount of waste in the future.
These products range from materials consumed once by several people to those that are consumed routinely for most of their day, which generates a large amount of waste without people being aware of it quickly.
Thus, Circular Economy was created with the intention of solving this problem. It is based on the life cycle of nature, which is born, grows, reproduces, and dies, and then becomes fertilizer, that is, raw material for a new life.
Circular Economy is based on the possibility of eliminating the concept of waste from the population by following a cyclical flow process, which makes all material reusable.
But for its realization, technical and economic compatibility is required, as well as social and institutional fit, sharing its incentives and values. Circular Economy goes beyond waste management and recycling, because it also works with the redesign of processes and products, bringing, from old materials, a new optimized model, keeping the quality of its design and efficiency.
Thus, its pillars are based on the values of minimal resource extraction and maximizing reuse, increasing efficiency, and developing new business models.
The principles of Circular Economy
The circular economy focuses on the value of the product and materials, using them for as long as possible, thus generating short-term consumption and long-term strategy.
The price of raw materials varies with supply risks. A new relationship with the consumer, take-back programs, and new business models are realized, as well as increasing the competitiveness of the economy. With the contribution of natural capital conservation, there is then a reduction of carbon dioxide emissions and waste, and climate change is extinguished.
According to the Foundation, Circular Economy is composed of 3 principles. They are:
Principle 1: Preservation and increase of natural capital
All resources necessary for human life come from nature. Natural capital concerns the responsibility over the consumption of these basic resources of the production economy. In other words, nature is as valuable as human actions, which are also dependent on ecosystem services.
Thus, it becomes necessary to reuse materials to avoid their depletion. With recycling, a new withdrawal of materials is avoided, and what you already have is conserved and what can help production with a longer lifespan, resulting in a potential increase in sustainable economic growth.
Principle 2: Optimizing the production of resources
The economy carries with it the value of remanufacturing, renewal, and recycling so that resources are reused without the need to extract new ones, which work through biological cycles or technical cycles.
Biological cycles ensure the reintegration of nutrients from matter, which also occurs in the decomposition stage. Then it is renewed to become raw material for a new cycle. But there are also those materials that are biodegradable or obtained from vegetable matter, in which case they return through the process of composting and anaerobic digestion.
In this way, following the natural cycle of life, the materials will be regenerated to provide renewable resources for the economy.
In the technical cycle, products are restored and recovered through energy. Reuse, repair, remanufacturing, or recycling strategies are used. There is a predominance in some strategies, because in smaller internal circuits there is less energy expenditure.
This preserved energy matches the labor involved in production and the energy itself. For the process, in addition to regenerating, also extends the life of the materials by providing an even greater guarantee for their reuse.
Principle 3: Making the system more ecological and efficient
Avoid the damage produced by products and services that routinely require humans such as mobility, noise pollution and release of toxic substances and climate change through the consumption of land, air, water, food, among others.
For a better result in controlling the waste of resources, the idea is to avoid the extraction of raw materials and to avoid environmental and noise pollution so that you can keep a continuous circle.
ClickCard, by transforming printed business cards into digital ones, supports the circular economy by acting in the area of technology. The idea is to avoid the use of natural resources more and more, in the case of ClickCard the paper that is the result of deforestation, so that a quality of life is maintained for the population and the environment.
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