Circular economy strategies for combating climate change and other environmental issues

Mingyu Yang, Lin Chen, Jiangjiang Wang, Goodluck Msigwa, Ahmed I. Osman, Samer Fawzy, David W. Rooney, Pow Seng Yap*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

164 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Global industrialization and excessive dependence on nonrenewable energy sources have led to an increase in solid waste and climate change, calling for strategies to implement a circular economy in all sectors to reduce carbon emissions by 45% by 2030, and to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. Here we review circular economy strategies with focus on waste management, climate change, energy, air and water quality, land use, industry, food production, life cycle assessment, and cost-effective routes. We observed that increasing the use of bio-based materials is a challenge in terms of land use and land cover. Carbon removal technologies are actually prohibitively expensive, ranging from 100 to 1200 dollars per ton of carbon dioxide. Politically, only few companies worldwide have set climate change goals. While circular economy strategies can be implemented in various sectors such as industry, waste, energy, buildings, and transportation, life cycle assessment is required to optimize new systems. Overall, we provide a theoretical foundation for a sustainable industrial, agricultural, and commercial future by constructing cost-effective routes to a circular economy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-80
Number of pages26
JournalEnvironmental Chemistry Letters
Volume21
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2022

Keywords

  • Circular economy applications and opportunities
  • Circular economy strategies
  • Climate change
  • Cost-effective route
  • Life cycle assessment
  • Waste management

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