Circular Economy

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DUBLIN: The Irish government has awarded €490,000 to 10 projects developing circular economy businesses in Ireland for sustainable fashion, marine plastics, reusable food packaging and construction.

The companies are AM Acoustic Materials, Community Resources Network Ireland, Cork Environmental Forum, Everlend Ltd, GIY Ireland, Irish Green Building Council, Marine Applications Ltd T/A Verifact, Novelplast Teoranta, PACE Organisation, and Thriftify Technologies Ltd.

“The scale of the challenge to become circular requires change at every level of our society,” commented Ossian Smyth, the coalition government minister responsible for the Circular Economy and Communications. “I am delighted to be able to support these projects which have been proposed from people active in making and advocating change.”

According to a report from the European Environment agency (EEA), applying circular economy principles to enable Europe transition to green energy is a win-win approach to achieve its climate objectives.

By 2030, a growing European clean energy infrastructure is expected to produce 1.5 million tonnes annually of glass, metals and silicone photovoltaic waste; 4.75 million tonnes of concrete, metals and composites waste from wind energy resources; and 240,000 tonnes of lithium-ion batteries to be recycled or reused from energy storage and mobility sectors.

This, says the EEA, presents “significant opportunities to reduce consumption of scarce raw materials by recycling metals and other valuable resources back into production systems” via eco-design, material-specific recycling targets and extended producer responsibility schemes.

Following a public consultation earlier this year, Ireland’s first whole-of-government circular economy strategy and Circular Economy Bill will be published in September. It follows the establishment of Circuléire, the country’s first cross-sectoral industry-led innovation network to develop circular manufacturing systems, supply chains and business models to reduce CO2 emissions and waste.
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