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Zero-waste tech fuelling circular economy topic of PreScouter report
Monday, 24 February, 2020, 14 : 00 PM [IST]
PreScouter, a Chicago-based research intelligence company, recently released a detailed report on zero-waste technologies and initiatives that are fuelling a more circular economy. In North America, current recycling infrastructure does not recover more than 10 per cent of post-consumer plastics, and today’s supply of recycled plastics meets just six per cent of the real demand.

Closed Loop Partners has estimated the addressable market in Canada and the US for plastics and petrochemicals to be $120 billion, which could be met, in part, by recovering waste plastics. This is where PreScouter sees the significance of this report by presenting innovative technologies in place.

“Today, we face several challenges when it comes to use of materials, plastic in particular. The two main ones being creating waste, especially after a very short use of the material, and using non-renewable resources to make the materials we need,” said Marija Jovic, co-author and technical director for the chemicals, materials and packaging industry, PreScouter.

“Replacing liner with circular economy could address these issues by reusing, recycling and using sustainably-sourced materials. Adopting circular-economy principles could not only have environmental and social benefits, but could also generate a significant economic benefit,” he added.

The report detailed 10 companies that fall under one of the two main circular economy categories - recycling and reusing. Most of the profiled technologies and initiatives cover plastic waste, but a few examples do delve into other types of waste such as garments and mobile phones.

Marta Carvalho, researcher and co-author of the report, stated, “By creating a circular economy, we can generate products that can be reused, minimising the loss of their value and optimising the use of resources.”

“However, this is not so simple. We need to redesign our business models and develop new materials and disruptive production processes. We all need to take part. Customers need to change their way of buying products, rethinking their consumption patterns. Governments need to adopt legislatives and policy tools for promoting the circular economy model,” she added.

“The shift from a linear to a circular economy will not be easy. However, we need this circular economy revolution to prosper and sustain our environment, creating a positive ecological, economic and social impact,” stated Carvalho.
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