The Dutch Government wants to achieve a fully circular economy by 2050 – one of the most ambitious commitments to the circular economy anywhere in the world.
Last September, the government presented its vision (read on ) and formulated an interim target of a 50% reduction in the use of primary raw materials. This week a start was made with realizing the objectives by signing the raw materials agreement in The Hague.
Metabolic is one of more than 180 organizations that have signed the agreement. The complete text about the contribution that Metabolic wants to make to realizing the circular economy objectives can be found below.
Ambition and commitment to the realization and implementation of these Transition agendas
Metabolic is a pioneer in the use of systems thinking for solving sustainability issues. Our approach is praised by governments, companies and NGOs around the world. With an international and multidisciplinary team of about 25 environmental scientists, industrial ecologists, business experts, engineers and programmers, we cover a wide range of topics, from strategic system issues to sustainable area development.
In addition to providing consulting services, we develop software and new technologies, we build showcases and create startups. We strengthen society through education and communication and spread our knowledge through a foundation to other communities. The focus of our work follows the coming and going of new challenges. We think big, because the challenges force us to do so.
The intended objectives of the raw materials agreement are fully in line with Metabolic’s mission: to transform the economy into a fundamentally sustainable state. We do this by:
- Providing knowledge, insights and tools for policy making by global influencers in the public and private sector.
- Developing companies and supporting existing networks that address challenges on a global scale.
- Inspiring and strengthening a new generation of innovators by building networks, providing people with educational resources for self-development and action, and drawing attention to the biggest challenges.
Over the past 5 years, we have collected detailed data from global raw material flows in many sectors in more than 200 projects. For example, the global food and agricultural system in a study for WW and data on raw material flows in sectors such as electronics, textiles, chemicals, metals and construction. From this information we distill insights about where the priorities lie for circularity and what this means for the innovation agenda of companies and sectors. We would be very pleased to use this knowledge for the design of the transition agendas in the raw materials agreement.
What do you actually contribute to the agreement in the area of knowledge and services?
Metabolic has expertise and relevant experience on all five transition themes. As systems thinkers, we are effective in identifying opportunities for circular principles and developing transition processes. We can draw on practical experiences with project development and a large partner network. Thanks to our hands-on approach, we are not only a reliable partner for advice, but also a sought-after (co-) developer of innovative and leading projects. Some recent examples are:
- A strategy and roadmap for the province of Friesland for circular development and innovation within the regional industrial sectors.
- The modeling of innovation trajectories for an international clothing brand to achieve fully circular production chains in 2025.
- A strategy to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions of the global goods transport sector by 50% by 2030 for an international NGO.
Our concrete contribution to one or more of the transition agendas could consist of:
- Consulting services: analysis of specific sectors to prioritize transitions and develop roadmaps, with a focus on raw material flows and technology development. We can also help with process management, coordinating stakeholders, vision development and setting up financial models.
- Tool development: we can develop matrices for monitoring progress. Over the past year we have developed a framework for a national dashboard for countries to evaluate their performance in the field of circularity. This could be tailored to the Dutch situation.