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Leveraging Technology Keys to Enable the Circular Economy

A circular economy is driven towards optimal use of resources and minimization of waste, not waste. A transition to sustainability that ensures the world can make the most of it, as a fundamentally premised model of sharing, leasing, reusing, repairing, refurbishing and recycling. Unlike the traditional linear economy of create, consume and dispose, the circular economy promises environmental benefits that can drive growth and increase the choice of products with longer lifecycles. increase. As this change manifests itself as a worthwhile strategy, we need to think about the tools needed to make this paradigm shift happen. The answer, simply put, lies in what revolutionized us today: technology.

According to Mapfre, work needs to be done on two fronts when it comes to establishing a circular economy. The first is social awareness. Its main obstacle is changing the mindset of millions of consumers around the world. at a higher economic level; second, many steps need to be taken from ‘planning’ to ‘implementing’ to achieve the goals set.

In both challenges, technology is the primary tool that must be used, as only the most innovative advances will reach the largest number of people. More importantly, technology reduces the cost of procedures such as recycling that are essential to a circular economy model.

The Indian context supports the aforementioned claims. As Rajeev Mital, managing director of Autodesk India and the SAARC Nations, points out in a Business Today report, the use of building information modeling at Bangalore International Airport allowed the team to do more with data. informed decisions, resulting in increased construction efficiency and reduced costs. Fewer mistakes also means less material wastage and less negative impact on the environment. Similarly, programs that promote reuse and recycling have been able to reach large numbers of people through digital media.

While we can unanimously agree on the relevance of technology to achieve a circular economy, now is the time to step up our game and accelerate the necessary shift. To this end, a more strategic and forward-thinking approach can be very useful. Conceptually, we have to ask why a circular economy has not yet been achieved despite years of emphasis on recycling, reuse and green practices. The answer lies in the fact that we have not undergone a holistic change and the circular economy does not yet make economic sense at the level of practical use. This is where new technology needs to be leveraged.

World Economic Forum member Javier García Martínez says new technologies are essential to enable disruptive closed production cycles. For example, why are we still dependent on crude oil? It’s a linear process that begins with drilling and ends with increasing CO2 levels. Because alternative cyclical processes make no economic sense, here disruptive technologies can play an important enabling role. Producing hydrogen can be used as fuel. New technologies, including grassroots innovation efforts, that enable these lucrative disruptions must be encouraged, funded and adopted across the board.

Similarly, any attempt towards a revolution in favor of circularity will require extensive collection and processing of data, perhaps only possible using today’s digital technologies. At the same time, consumers should engage in a circular culture that technology can help them with. For example, as reported by Greenbiz, tuna brand Anova allows consumers to use their mobile devices to scan a QR code on a tuna package and instantly receive information about the path the fish takes to the point of sale. We created an app based on blockchain technology that allows you to get As insights to verify authenticity, freshness, safety, fair trade fisheries certification and sustainability.

The app’s blockchain traceability system allows consumers to understand where a particular fish was caught, and associates relevant attributes, such as the day of the fisherman, with that fish to provide a more complete product story to the customer. can tell

Achieving a circular economy, with no room for waste and underutilized resources, ushers in an unparalleled era of sustainability and economic growth. Technology is the perfect partner to trust in this mission, and skillfully deploying technology can transform our economy for the best.

(Author is Chief Impact Officer of Recykal Foundation)