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Reduction of raw materials, waste and integration of secondary materials

The necessity for urban transformation towards a circular economy (CE) system is becoming more evident as urban population and waste generation are increasing. To face this challenge of decoupling the economy from natural resources extraction, the cities need to adhere to several programs and strategies established by national, regional and municipal levels such as CE Action Plans. Local policy makers can make public local commitment to tax and regulatory reforms, or promote legislation adaptation, prescribing green public procurement etc.

Regarding the reduction of raw materials and waste, currently in many countries, economic incentive regulations along with providing easily accessible recycling services have prompted improvements in recycling rates. Finding synergies and new valorisation routes among waste-streams, can promote not only sustainable benefits but also feasible circular business models and new markets for materials that were landfilled or incinerated so far.

Regarding the integration of Secondary raw materials (SRM), SRM are recycled materials that can be used in manufacturing processes instead of virgin raw materials. The use of SRMs faces a number of barriers, including the absence of EU-wide quality standards for certain materials, difficulties linked to the SRM trading across the EU or the acceptance from the consumers. New technologies enabling the tracking from waste to reusable SRM can make the value chain more transparent ensuring trust between all the stakeholders in the recycling process.

Source: https://www.collectors2020.eu/

In general, the engagement of end-users and key stakeholders will increase the social acceptance of the decisions and will facilitate the inclusion of sustainable behaviour amongst citizens. Social innovation is a key driver, ensuring a participative and democratic policy-making process.

Product life cycle stages & Modules (EN15978): Full Value chain.

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Awareness raisingCircular economyCitizen participationEducationFinanceFundingGovernance and policyStakeholder engagementClimate resilienceLocal resourceWasteIndustryTechnology
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