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Amsterdam approves a circular economy strategy

The city hopes to go completely circular by mid-century

  • April 14, 2020 17:30
  • Author Aseniya Dimitrova
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The Amsterdam of the future will be much more sustainable, with 50 % less use of raw materials in a decade’s time and with an entirely circular economy by 2050. But not before it reaches its 2020-2025 goals, which have just been set out and approved by the College of Mayor and Aldermen.

Less garbage and CO2 emissions

The Amsterdam Circular 2020-2025 looks at the local economy from a completely new perspective placing the focus on how locals produce, process and consume. The circular economy strategy thus envisages that locals will be using products for longer, repairing and sharing them more often, instead of throwing them away.

A whole set of measures is previewed to achieve the circularity of the Dutch capital, which concerns citizens, businesses and of course – the public services. This includes, but is not limited to, new ways to collect and sort waste, purchasing more second-hand products and construction with more sustainable materials. Buildings can serve the circular economy upon deconstruction, too – the companies involved in the process will have to determine whether there are valuable materials left.

Less food wasted

Up to 50% less food will be wasted by the end of the decade with the excess of processed food going to those who need it and cannot afford it. A system enticing sharing of goods, purchasing from thrift shops, online marketplaces and repair services will be created to meet the willingness of Amsterdammers to improve the environment – according to municipal research, as many as 75% of the residents agree that they should buy less.

The municipality itself will be cutting its use of raw materials by 20% and only make circular purchases by 2030 – this goes beyond mere office supplies and stretches to materials used for the construction of streets, for example.

What is more, Amsterdam, together with local business and knowledge institutions, is involved in as many as 200 sustainability projects. The municipality will be creating a special monitor to show which of them contributes the most to the circular strategy and will be making adjustments when needed.

Finally, no city exists in a vacuum and therefore Amsterdam cannot achieve circularity on its own. The capital city is hoping to be backed in its efforts by the Dutch government and the European Union, both having set high ambitions targets for a cleaner world and a more equal society.

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