Local authorities call for focus on circular economy

A new survey commissioned by ReLondon has found that local authorities and SMEs want to see the circular economy become more of a priority for their own organisations and for UK policy makers.

circular economyThe research, which surveyed 300 senior decision makers in local authorities and SMEs across England, found that 77 per cent believe accelerating a global circular economy should be a high priority for policymakers in the build-up to COP26.

The UK will host COP26, the next United Nations Climate Change Conference, in Glasgow this November.

A total of 74 per cent of respondents said they would like their organisations to make more use of the circular economy, and 28 per cent are not convinced that circular economy practices are well embedded in their organisation.

The results also appeared to call for the circular economy to be more widely understood and with greater clarity of its benefits.

23 per cent of those polled were not sure of how a circular economy can help tackle the climate crisis, with only 50 per cent stating they were very confident in knowing what a circular economy means.

Speaking of the results, ReLondon has said that with momentum building towards COP26, there is a need to ensure the circular economy is more widely understood and adopted, which will be a focus of their fourth Circular Economy Week, to be held from 14-18 June.

ReLondon is the new name for the London Waste and Recycling Board (LWARB), announcing the change alongside publishing the findings of this survey. All of LWARB’s programmes, including Circular London, Resource London and Advance London, will now operate under ReLondon.

Wayne Hubbard, CEO of ReLondon, said: “A circular economy can help deliver the drastic reductions in carbon emissions needed to meet global targets.

“There is growing awareness that our 'take, make, dispose' model isn’t working; changing the way we all make, consume and dispose of stuff is an essential contribution to tackling the climate crisis.

“With the UK preparing to host COP26, this is a critical year for climate action – and the circular economy needs to be high on the agenda for everyone, with London leading the way.”