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Benefits of a Circular Economy: Why We Need to Close the Loop

The world is only 7.2% circular

This number means that out of all the materials consumed worldwide, only 7.2% are secondary raw materials. In other words, 92.8% of the materials we use end up as waste, lost to our economy and environment. 

While discussions about the circular economy have surged in recent years, the reality is that we're using more virgin materials than ever before.

The current "take-make-waste" linear system has been around for a very long time, but it's no longer sustainable. We're depleting natural resources too fast for the planet to cope with the waste we generate.

Sources:: Kemianteollisuus ry, Sitra & Business Finland (2020): Circular business models for chemical companies

Imagine a world where resources are not wasted but used and reused creatively. The circular economy offers a solution, a paradigm shift that focuses on keeping resources in use for as long as possible. This is achieved by:

  • Designing products for longevity and easy repair: Think durable materials, modular components, and readily available spare parts.

  • Extending the lifespan of products through reuse and refurbishment: Giving products a second life by repairing, upgrading, or repurposing them.

  • Recycling materials at the end of their useful life: Transforming used materials into new products, keeping them out of landfills, and minimizing resource extraction.

The benefits of a circular economy have a wide impact:

  • Environmental: Reduced resource extraction, less pollution and waste, and a smaller carbon footprint.

  • Economic: New job creation in repair, refurbishment, and remanufacturing sectors, boosted resource efficiency, and potential cost savings for businesses.

  • Social: Increased societal well-being through sustainable resource management and a focus on long-term benefits over short-term gains.

Transitioning to a circular economy requires a collective effort from individuals, businesses, and policymakers. To learn more about the circular economy and its scope of impact, we encourage you to explore the following resources:

Curious about how Finland is leading the way in embracing circularity? Stay tuned for more inspiring stories and innovative initiatives! 


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