Today, the European Environment Agency (EEA) presented its fourth Circular Economy Report. The report shows the state of progress of the transition to a circular economy in Europe.

Circular materials management can reduce waste generation and raw material commutation, improve resource efficiency, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and contribute to the preservation of biodiversity. A large-scale transition is necessary for people and the environment, for society and the economy. However, the EEA report published today shows that the circular economy is still in its infancy in Europe.

VITO experts in circular economy (Sustainable materials management) contributed to this report and highlight the following conclusions.

  • The transition is still in a niche, especially with regard to the inner cycles such as longer use, reuse or recovery of products.
  • The current policy instruments of the European countries mainly focus on the waste stage, but the attention for the design and use stages of the product cycle is increasing.
  • Attention to a business model with innovation as an important lever for circular economy is increasing. However, business culture, market and system factors make it difficult to scale up circular business models.
  • There is need for adapted monitoring systems (data and indicators) in order to be able to monitor the levers for the transition.

More info

Press release EEA:

EEA report: