So what are the real Benefits of Zero Waste Policies?
Adopting ZERO WASTE principles will
- Cut costs
- Save energy
- Save raw materials
- Create new jobs
Current business models that could power innovation towards a circular economy encourage ideas around alternative, resource-efficient solutions. These models showcases a range of different implementations of the new circular economy with a Zero Waste philosophy at its core. They range from closed loop recycling to service-based solutions built on material optimisation.
At the heart of the circular economy are models based around dematerialised services, offering product benefits where the physical product does not exist at the point of use, such as answer phone services.
Such models have the potential to change consumption patterns and deliver potential material savings but this must be balanced against the materials used in the surrounding service infrastructure.
Examples are found all around us. Take Spotify and Love Film for example. These provide on-demand delivery of music and film via internet or mail using outsourced/public infrastructure with minimal overheads.
The all pervasive Cloud Computing is another successful concept, where applications such as email and document management services are managed on virtual software platforms running on remotely housed and managed hardware (servers).
Product service systems are also gaining in popularity, where the product may be designed for long life, short life or a mix depending upon the optimum output requirements. Designing for disassembly, re-manufacture and reuse also fits in here.
Rolls Royce for instance sell its engine’s thrust as ‘power by the hour’, which includes full in-use monitoring, servicing, repair, re-manufacture and replacement.
Zero Waste principles are all around you…and so are the real business benefits.