What is the circular economy?
The circular economy is a different way of doing business.
The way our economies extract, use, then dispose of resources is putting pressure on our natural systems, communities, and public health. This is a linear economy—it moves in a straight line from resource extraction to waste disposal.
In a circular economy, nothing is waste. The circular economy retains and recovers as much value as possible from resources by reusing, repairing, refurbishing, remanufacturing, repurposing, or recycling products and materials.
It’s about using valuable resources wisely, thinking about waste as a resource instead of a cost, and finding innovative ways to better the environment and the economy.
Learn about the circular economy
Both businesses and individuals can save money and create opportunities in a circular economy. For example, businesses can launch product buy-back programs that recover usable materials, or create new materials from product waste—like turning pulp-and-paper-mill waste into renewable plastics or textiles.
As individuals, we can use circular economy principles to cut our waste and save money by reusing or repairing items, or by using sharing services like tool libraries or car sharing. This movement has been building momentum as governments, businesses and individuals embrace more circular approaches.
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