Governing-body ISO has released a new standard designed to help organisations leverage new business opportunities of what’s known as the circular economy.
According to a release from ISO, the technical committee “TC 323, Circular Economy, aims to cover all aspects of a circular economy, including public procurement, production and distribution, end of life as well as wider areas such as behavioural change in society, and assessment, such as some kind of circularity footprint or index,” of the product.
The World Economic Forum -WEF- has previously released a report stating that amongst a raft of benefits of the circular economy for the environment, organisations stand to benefit from “a trillion-dollar opportunity, which huge potential for innovation, job creation and economic growth.”
A circular economy is one where products that are produced are regenerative, recyclable or up-cycleable, rather than the traditional buy, use, throw-away model. The aim is to reduce waste, and encourage organisations to innovate new ways in which their products can lessen their impact on the environment through wastage and pollution.
The WEF also says that “the quest for a substantial improvement in resource performance across the economy has lead businesses to explore ways to reuse performance across the economy has led businesses to explore ways to reuse products or their components and restore more of their precious material, energy and labour inputs.”
It continued to explain that the “economic benefit of transitioning to this new business model is estimated to be worth more than one-trillion dollars in material savings.”
“The members of the committee agree that there is a need to act now and develop standards in this area as quickly as possible,” Catherine Chevauche, chair of ISO’s new committee on the circular economy said.
“In order to have a new economic model, businesses need a new business model- what has been lacking is a truly global vision of what a circular economy really is and a model that any organization can adopt,” she said.
“This is particularly true in developing countries, who have tended to bear the brunt of inequalities of wealth and waste in the developed world,” Chevauche concluded.