The economic system we live in today is a linear system. In other words, we obtain the materials necessary for the production of our needs from nature, that is, from the world. we produce products with these materials and finally throw away the leftovers from the products. We produce waste.
Circular economics, on the other hand, has the opposite explanation. First of all, no waste is produced in this economic system. There are three cornerstones of the circular economy: the elimination of waste and pollution, the circulation of products and materials at the highest rates, and the renewal of nature.
The biggest supporter of this system is the transition to renewable energy and materials. In the circular economy, which offers flexibility for the business world, the environment and human beings, economic activities are carried out separately from the consumption of limited natural resources.
The circular economy is a pool of solutions that covers all the measures and actions taken against waste and pollution, climate change and biodiversity loss.
In order to be included in the circular economy system, which is one of the ways of our integration with the world we live in, every material in the existing produce-produce-dispose system must be transformed. We need to analyze how we manage our resources, how we produce and consume products, and then what we do with the materials we have left. This is the only way to create a circular economy that includes the whole world.
In fact, they are not what we call disposable products. It is the world and the economy that is thrown away. How is the economy that is not reintegrated into a waste-free economy, in which resources are included in the cycle and nature is revived?
The circular economy addresses social needs by offering solutions to environmental problems. While this cyclicality reduces environmental problems, it increases social welfare and improves employment.
Recycling vs. Circular Economy
Recycling is all the actions taken to make waste materials reusable, that is, to convert them.
Recycling starts from the end. The product is returned from the dead. However, it would be wrong to call it a recycling system for the circular economy. Because recycling is only one part of the circular economy. The circular economy starts before the product is produced. The minimum waste and pollution is calculated and then the raw materials of the product are procured and the product is produced with the least waste. After all these processes are completed, the recycling phase can be mentioned. From this point of view, recycling alone is insufficient to solve environmental and economic problems.
Why Circular Economy
The aim of the circular economy is not to have to come to the recycling stage and to develop ways to do so. Although it may seem like a cliché, solving the problem at the source is to prevent waste from the beginning.
According to the circular economy framework, waste and pollution are the design errors of the hundreds of years old economic system. The Band-Aid of this design error is recycling. Reaching a stage where there is no need for recycling means that the circular economy is successful in preventing waste of resources.