Ellen MacArthur study signals Welsh leadership on circular economy

Wales is "ideally placed" to be a circular economy front runner according to a new report from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, which predicts the country could generate annual multi-billion cost savings by going circular.

The Foundation has focused on Wales for a regional study into the benefits of the circular economy and how to unlock them.

The study, ‘Wales and the Circular Economy: Favourable system conditions and economic opportunities’ commissioned by WRAP on behalf of the Welsh Government, found that the circular economy could deliver “manifold” benefits for Wales, including the potential for job creation, a positive economic climate and cost savings throughout industry.

Under certain circumstances, these cost savings could be as great as £2 billion a year in material costs alone – although this would be throughout the whole supply chain, including those parts which are outside Wales.

The study also outlines recommendations on how to make the Welsh economy more circular and highlights Welsh businesses such as furniture manufacturer Orangebox and waste electricals specialist Metech which are already demonstrating circular economy thinking in their work.

According to Ellen MacArthur Foundation CEO Jamie Butterworth, there is fast growing interest from Welsh regions looking to the the circular economy as a way to regenerate economic activity and industry.

“This study outlines the strong commitment already made by Wales towards effective resource management, and shows that the country is ideally placed to capitalise on these fertile system conditions to kickstart a new cycle of economic development through circular practices,” he said.

Maxine Perella

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