The Role of the Circular Economy For Climate Change
The role of the circular economy in the COP27 is very important in helping solve the problem of climate change. For information, COP stands for Conference of Parties. COP is the supreme decision-making body of a convention or agreement from the UNFCCC. The main task of the COP is to review the implementation of the UNFCCC in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and fighting climate change. This year, the 27th COP was held in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt from 6 to 18 November 2022.
COP27 Key Results in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt
There were several key outcomes from COP27. The first is regarding “loss and damage” funding from developed countries for poor countries that have experienced environmental damage due to climate change. This is important because the climate crisis is not only bad for the environment, but also for the economy and society. The second discusses the ability of countries to commit to keeping world temperature from reaching 1.5 degrees Celsius as Paris Agreement Goals. Third, emphasizing the use of low-emission energy. Fourth, the commitment to reduce the use of coal and fossil fuels. Fifth, various policies related to funding carried out by the World Bank for countries facing the impact of GHG emission. Sixth, countries’ strategies to adapt to climate change. Seventh, findings of facts and “tipping point” data from the IPCC regarding climate change.
Why does the circular economy have to face the climate crisis?
The Ellen MacArthur Foundation stated that many COP27 discussions raised the issue of renewable energy. However, these discussions must still be complemented by efforts to create a circular material supply chain. Due to the fact that 45% of emissions come from the products we make and use and how we use the land. This shows that most of the GHG emission problems come from the materials we use. For example, gas emissions from food loss and waste in the agriculture industry and clothing in the fashion industry.
How can the circular economy contribute to the climate crisis?
The application of circular economy principles can be an illustration of how the application of circular economy can contribute to tackling climate change.
Eliminate waste and pollution
This principle emphasizes us to design products so that they do not produce waste and pollution. We create the design before we make the product, so this principle emphasizes the importance of prevention. In other words, this principle prevents the production of GHG emissions.
Circulate products and materials (at their highest value)
The second principle emphasizes us to build circularity in the products and materials we make. This circularity is divided into biological cycle and technical cycle. As a result, products and materials that are no longer used actually return to being resources. This principle will be useful in saving primary resources. This principle will also help overcome climate change because it can reduce the production of GHG emissions and the use of energy from the extraction process.
Lastly, this principle emphasizes us to build systems that can build resources in nature. We can create a system that is in harmony with nature so that it does not cause environmental damage. Preserving the environment such as reducing tree cutting, restoring forests, reducing the use of natural resources, processing food waste into organic fertilizer can be our way to prevent global warming.