According to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s definition, "circular economy" is a generic term for an economy designed to regenerate itself.
This process does not foresee the existence of waste, because the product at the end of its use is ready to be transformed again into other products.
Glass is one of the main symbols of the circular economy.
Its separate collection allows it to be recycled countless times, without affecting the quality of its properties, saving energy and raw materials.
In this article we will talk about the advantages that the circular economy has on our planet and the role that glass plays in this eco-sustainable landscape.
The birth of the circular economy
The economic model adopted to date is exhausting and destroying the reality that surrounds us: desertification, climate change, pollution.
Its scheme is linear, and provides: the extraction of raw materials, the production, distribution and consumption of products, which eventually become waste.
But the limited natural resources of the Earth and the constant increase in the demographic rate, force us to find a new way of producing and consuming.
Thus was born the circular economy, a model of production and consumption that aims to extend the life cycle of products, reducing the amount of waste.
It is an overall and radical rethinking of the classic production model, based on the hyper-exploitation of natural resources and the maximization of profits by reducing production costs.
Adopting a circular approach means keeping materials and their value in circulation, in order to constantly minimize waste.
The benefits of the circular economy
The circular economy model has many advantages, ranging from environmental to financial.
Let’s see some of them:
Savings on raw materials:
Minimizing the exploitation of natural resources means preserving their depletion, counteracting supply difficulties and rising prices.
Reduction of harmful emissions:
Limiting the spread of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere makes it possible to plug the damage of air pollution on the greenhouse effect and global warming.
Use of renewable energy:
In a closed system, it would not be possible to use energy that is depleted (fossil fuels, nuclear and terrestrial minerals), which is why in the circular economy we resort to renewable energy resources (solar, hydroelectric, photovoltaic, wind, etc.).
Innovative drive for economic growth:
Designing products with a view to recovery means making them more durable and updated, encouraging new technologies to seek an approach that is sustainable and profitable at the same time.
Increase in jobs:
The Environment Commission estimates that 700000 new jobs could be created by 2030 thanks to the circular economy in the European Union.
Glass: a model for the circular economy
In this scenario of sustainable development, glass is certainly a huge resource. There is no limit to the number of times you can recycle it, and recovery operations are not only useful, but necessary!
Although not a polluting material, a single glass bottle takes 4000 years to be disposed of naturally from the environment. For this and many other reasons it is essential to reintroduce glass waste in production processes.
In recent years in Italy, the recycling rate of glass has reached 76.6%, and has saved about 3020000 tons of raw materials and about 2 million tons of CO2.
Glass is considered the reference model of the circular economy, because
Thanks to its efficient and safe recycling, it represents the best packaging for the protection of the environment.
In addition to being durable and highly sustainable, the lightness and transparency of this material, make it particularly aesthetic and elegant.
Involving glass in the circular economy process means:
preserving the consumption of energy and raw materials, minimising waste production;
give him always new and original features that give justice to his ductile and precious soul.
At Amarzo we aim to exploit the characteristics of a wonderful material such as glass, to support the circular economy and create original eco-sustainable works. If you, too, care about the preservation of our planet and are a lover of traditional craftsmanship, come and discover 100% recycled glass products on our website.
Article edited by Sofia Tamborra