What is the circular economy?

A circular economy is made up of three practical principles driven by design

Eliminate waste and pollution

Circulate products and materials (at their highest value)

Regenerate natural and social systems

The circular economy cannot be realised by one project, one policy, or one narrative. The principles of the circular economy present a mirror of possible solutions reflecting the complexity of the problems to be solved in the world today.

Circular economy can address


of global greenhouse gas emissions

Circular economy can unlock the value of


of raw materials that are wasted after a single use

Circular economy is a


trillion dollar opportunity

Circular economy can reduce the


biodiversity loss associated with extraction & processing of natural resources

What the circular economy is not

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    Myth 1

    It’s all about better waste management

    Nope. The circular economy is about designing out waste, rather than just designing with waste.

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    Myth 2

    It’s all about recycling more

    The focus of a circular economy is on maintaining materials at their highest possible value for the longest possible time. Strategies might include reuse, repair, refurbishment, and remanufacturing. Recycling is the last resort.

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    Myth 3

    It’s just a fancy word for sustainability

    The circular economy does not aim to ‘sustain’ our current situation. It is about designing differently from the outset, rather than mitigating and reducing the impacts of something that has already been created. Not less bad, rather more good.

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We’re Australian, but with a global vision and influence.

We acknowledge the first and continuing custodians of the countries and the grounds upon which we all collectively work, create, live and dream. We recognise the unique and enduring relationship that exists between Indigenous Peoples and their traditional territories the world over. We welcome their deep knowledge and participation in the circular economy.

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