The low carbon circular economy

The circular economy. The biggest business transformation since the Industrial Revolution. The natural successor to our current model of ‘take, make and waste’.

Resources need not be abandoned to become waste. All products and materials can be safe. They can flow safely and easily in and out of our homes and businesses.

A circular economy is about two distinct ‘life cycles’. Materials that can be safely composted or otherwise returned to the environment. And those that cannot, including materials like plastics, petrochemical-based products and chemicals.

We design to keep them separate. We make reprocessing or disposal safer and easier.

To make this work, more products may become services. Everyone may not necessarily own cars, power tools, or even clothes the way they do today. They might choose to pay for access to them instead. Repair and replacement will be all part of the service.

We can maintain and improve our standard of living, while reducing our impact on the living world. We can live abundant, healthier, happier and more equitable lives. We can ensure little or no stray materials pollute the countryside, seas or air.

Read ‘Going Full Circle’, our new state of the nation report which reveals how Aotearoa New Zealand is tracking towards a circular economy. It includes six key action areas to help businesses contribute to the transition and thrive in a new economy.

Read ‘The Circular Economy Opportunity for Auckland’, a 2018 study led by SBN showing Auckland could be $8.8 billion better off in 2030 if it shifted to a circular economy. It would also have much lower carbon emissions.

Get involved

Our Go Circular 2025 programme provides practical tools and resources. It will help you apply circular economy thinking today. Talk to us now about how this can reduce your costs, cut waste and open up new opportunities.

Go Circular 2025