Routes to circularity: Creating a Circular Economy in Construction/
Date:2 November, 2022
Organiser:Irish Green Building Council
The built environment is responsible for almost 50 per cent of raw materials consumption in Europe. The construction industry is the largest source of waste generated annually in Europe, producing 33% (821 million tonnes). Construction produces nearly half of all waste in Ireland (8.8 million tonnes of construction and demolition waste was generated and collected in Ireland in 2019 according to the EPA).
Over the last number of years, the world at large has been focusing on the journey of switching to renewable energy. However, this will only address 55% of global emissions. The remaining 45% come from the fact that we are stuck in a linear economy (take-make-dispose), and we are constantly extracting from the Earth to make goods. Construction is an activity that requires numerous extractions and numerous goods to create the buildings and infrastructure that surround us every day.
To limit the effects of climate change, we must transition to a sustainable, nature-based model. This model is called the circular economy.
A circular economy is a system where we keep the materials that we have already extracted to their highest value and reuse these materials. In this system there is no waste. Everything flows and copies the regenerative cycles of nature. This allows us to avoid extraction from the Earth’s finite resources and reduce carbon emissions. If the construction industry alters the way they practice, it could have a hugely beneficial effect on the environment.
This webinar series will showcase a selection of actions we can take as an industry to transition to the nature, positive economy that is the circular economy. These amazing speakers are not just preaching circularity, they are doing circularity!