What does Circular economy really mean?

April 28, 2020

Can you imagine a world without landfill?

The Circular Economy is a phenomenon that is growing with popularity, as it sets out to spell an end to a traditional linear economy focused on production, consumption and throwing things away.  

traditional linear economy explained visually

But what is the Circular Economy and why can it change our throwaway culture?

The Circular Economy is a system where resources are used effectively, and nothing is wasted.

In a traditional system, raw material is collected and used to manufacture new products, which are used until they’re no longer serving their purpose. At this point recycling or often landfill is used to dispose of the product. In a Circular Economy model, resources are used to their maximum potential. Recycling is the last option and reusing and re-manufacturing all by-products into new viable materials is preferred. Additionally, there are steps you can take at each stage of the product life to reduce waste:

  • Instead of mining virgin ore; recycled materials are used where possible.  
  • Products are manufactured so that they are easy to disassemble. This means if anything goes wrong, they can be taken apart, serviced and repaired.  

Active sustainability.com have 10 core principles that define how the Circular Economy should work. There is a prevalence of processes that can be introduced to tackle issues with utilising existing products such as second use, reuse and reparation. However, with 80% of a products environmental impact locked in at the design stage, design for reuse, repair and recycling is essential at the earliest stage of a product’s life.

At Aceleron we designed our batteries with the Circular Economy in mind. Unlike traditional welded and glued battery packs, our patented technology is built for easy disassembly. This enables the easy remanufacture, reuse, recycling and repair (4R) of our lithium batteries. Recently awarded Best Circular Economy business at the Total and Vinci VivaTech awards, Aceleron is one of the few companies who are redefining the term sustainable. Ensuring that every part of their battery is reusable including the cells themselves.

Of course, Circular Economy is only one piece of the sustainable puzzle, many other aspects need to be taken into consideration for tech for good to be achieved. The Circular Economy is beginning to grow and has the ability to end the throwaway culture, but it requires not only companies to start utilising these types of business models but a change in consumers buying habits to prioritise sustainable products.

Find out how Aceleron supports Circular Economy models here.