Circular Economy- Audrey Churchill

     Although recycling is an important practice for us to have in trying to protect our planet and resources, recycling on its own will not help us in fixing our planet’s sustainability problems. A circular economy supports designing and creating products to be reused and minimize waste.  Most businesses in our current economy use the linear process which is when products go from being produced to waste, and although some of this waste may be recycled, this system is not as sustainable as it could be. A circular economy plans in a way so that economic activities that affect human health such as pollution are ;ess prominent. Only renewable resources are used in place of fossil fuels in a circular economy, as fossil fuels are not a maintainable energy resource. Additionally, products are designed in a way so that they are able to be recycled and circulating through the economy as long as possible.

     The goal of the circular economy is to align the economy with nature and try to imitate nature’s natural cycle.  McDonough and Bradfort use the analogy of a cherry tree where as fruit falls to the ground, the decomposing fruit puts nutrients into the ground and nourishes plants, insects, etc and supports regrowth and new life. This is how we should be trying to build our economy, so that waste is not harmful but instead serves a purpose, and things move back through the cycle as many times as possible.

     I appreciate the concept of a circular economy that nothing should be thrown away, as I myself try to waste as little as possible. The figure in the article that says one third of food produced for human consumption goes to waste is crazy to me as the world food program estimates 10% of the world is hungry and there is no reason for that much to go to waste. The same concept goes for clothes, our generation is constantly repurchasing clothes and keeping them for half the time that clothes were worn for before. This does not make sense because we have better technology now and clothes should be lasting longer, but fast fashion is taking over and this needs to be minimized as our world is dying around us. 

Overall, I have never heard of the idea of a circular economy before this class, but I believe it is what makes the most sense and I can’t believe I have never heard of it before. It is interesting to me as it seems the general public in Europe is so much more educated on sustainability, and I really do not know much although I have even taken a sustainability class before.

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