Beyond Recycling Tunnel Vision: Embracing the Holistic Circular Economy

Jul 2, 2024

Recycling Tunnel Vision

Many people mistakenly equate the circular economy solely with recycling, a narrow view we call “recycling tunnel vision.” This limited perspective overlooks the broader, systemic approach that the circular economy truly represents.

Recycling: An Important but Limited Solution

Recycling is valuable but just one part of the circular economy. It’s a linear process that often misses the full potential of materials and products. Similar to carbon offsets, recycling addresses issues after they occur, dealing with products at the end of their life cycle. In contrast, the circular economy focuses on extending product lifespans and maximising use from the start.

Recycling Tunnel Vision


A Lifecycle Perspective“The circular economy requires a fundamental shift in mindset, embracing a holistic perspective that considers the entire lifecycle of products, materials, and resources from design to end-of-life management.”

The circular economy involves rethinking and redesigning every stage of a product’s lifecycle. While recycling is important, it’s just one element of a broader, more sustainable economic model.

We explore this in further detail in both our webinar on the ISO 59000 Circular Economy standards and our Circular Economy Fundamentals course

Unlocking the Full Potential of Circularity

To fully realize the benefits of the circular economy, organizations must adopt a holistic mindset that permeates every stage of the product lifecycle, from design and sourcing to manufacturing, distribution, and end-of-life management. By doing so, they can:

  • Design products for longevity, modularity, and easy disassembly
  • Implement sharing and product-as-a-service models
  • Prioritise renewable, recyclable, and biodegradable materials
  • Optimise resource utilization and minimize waste
  • Establish robust reverse logistics and material recovery processes
  • Foster collaboration and create symbiotic relationships across value chains

Companies and regions must overcome recycling tunnel vision to embrace the circular economy and drive lasting, systemic change toward a sustainable future.

Contact Us Today!

Join the movement towards a truly sustainable future by partnering with Evolveable. Embrace the holistic circular economy today and transform your approach to product lifecycle management. Start making a difference now!

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