Does the Circular Economy Provide the Routemap to a Zero Carbon Future?
Circular Economy Wales has openly supported calls for a Climate Crisis Declaration in Wales. Now it has been declared by the Welsh Government, giving us the end destination of a Zero Carbon future with the fresh resolve and focus called upon by Greta Thunberg the 16-year-old School campaigner, how do we get there?
Here are 5 ways in which solutions are being provided by this new all Wales initiative, Circular Economy Wales CIC:
- From all corners of Wales, recycling and reuse businesses with no shareholders have been turning waste into hundreds of local jobs for many years. Reuse and recycling work best when the profits of collection and sales are harnessed and spent within the communities that has provided the tins, glass and paper. This approach incentives a faster drive towards Zero Waste. From the current climate emergency, community focused recyclers are now organising and collaborating across Wales under the banner Circular Economy Wales CIC to help Wales arrive at its Zero Waste targets ahead of time. With this as our goal, Circular Economy Wales CIC is rolling out the ‘Green Shed Network’ where the public will have access to the latest machinery and the detailed knowledge necessary to turn their own collected glass, metal, wood and plastic into any product imaginable.
- Wales’ future young entrepreneurs won’t access materials to create their innovations from scarred mountainsides. Wales’ future mines and quarries will be a flow of materials continuously ready for reprocessing at their end of use. Circular Economy Wales believes in this knowledge investment right now. That is why Circular Economy Wales CIC helped form and launch Zero Waste Schools Wales which is currently planning to pilot a scheme in Pembrokeshire and Cardiff schools with the intention of going Wales wide
- In order that Wales can help reduce supply chains between businesses and assist in the transition to a low carbon economy quickly, Circular Economy Wales CIC is establishing a ‘Mutual Credit System’, a form of Local Complementary Currency, to enable local purchasing between businesses, employers, consumers and government. With partners from the successful ‘Sardex’ in Sardina, the greatest facilitator of buy-local behaviour change will be rolled out: a system that has been replicated from its success in Sardinia 11 times across Italy’s regions.
- Wales needs to channel success back into the success loop. The profits and the energy of Circular Economy Wales initiatives will be further channelled into new incubator projects, rippling the benefits outwards quickly and effectively.
Eifion Williams, CEO of Circular Economy Wales says:
“We are in discussion with our partners the Sardex in Sardinia not only to set up a similar complementary currency system for Wales but also to channel the resources it will generate towards new start-ups in Wales that help us in our quest to cut carbon to zero”.
- Whatever we do, it won’t be enough. We are a small country, tiny alongside the superpowers. We need to tell other countries our story. Bring them with us in copying our Zero Waste and Zero Carbon targets as well as legislating for the needs of future generations as we have done in Wales.
“If a country, once famed for igniting the industrial revolution and being the biggest exporter of coal can commit to a carbon free future, then any country can.” – Eifion Williams
For this reason, Circular Economy Wales CIC has facilitated a Welsh delegation to present Wales’ Recycling success and imaginative legislative programme for sustainability at the Caux Land and Security Conference near Geneva at the end of June. Sophie Howe, Wales’ Future Generations Commissioner and Dr Jane Davidson of INSPIRE at Trinity College, former Environment Minister for Wales will help Circular Economy Wales share Wales’ legislative visions as well as the practical solutions from our communities that have enabled Wales to climb the global recycling league table from the worst in Europe to 3rd in the world in just over a decade of investment in change since 2005.