Before making lifestyle changes to adopt a circular economy approach to our own lives, we must first understand what this means.
In short, it aims to have products and materials circulating and being used with a purpose, for as long as possible.
In simple terms, a circular economy is all about sustainability. The earth’s resources are not limitless, and we can all play a role in maximising the use of what we have and the things we buy. Asking ourselves the question ‘can I make this item last longer?’ before throwing something away is a small environmental change we can all seek to make.
A circular economy can benefit the consumer directly as well as being good for the planet. For the consumer it saves money and provides more use from items. Once operational it is a practical solution to help the resource crisis that the world is approaching. It significantly reduces the amount going to landfill.
Take the textiles industry for example, large amounts of non-renewable resources are used to produce clothes, which in today’s world, are often only worn a few times before being disposed of. They often end up in an incinerator or landfill. Alternative options with clothing you no longer want could be:
· Donate to a charity shop
· Donate to a homeless shelter or refuge
· Find a local swap shop event
· Get creative – chop it up, add some sparkle, reinvent it into something you will wear
· Cut it up for cleaning cloths
· Use it as pet bedding
· If it’s because it’s broken – try to fix it!
· Repurpose it – turn a jacket into a bag, trousers into shorts, t-shirts into hair bobbles, shirts into a children’s toy or a cushion cover…the possibilities are endless!
This principle can be adapted to all items. An economy that considers the environmental and social impact of the way we behave requires a change of mindset.
A truly circular economy, whilst a simple concept in theory, takes time to achieve, but with a little re-thinking and small behaviour changes from many people, we can take steps towards this goal.
Published by Lock29 on