This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
THE BACK PAGE by Technical Editor Jonathan Newell


CIRCULAR ECONOMY AS BRITISH STANDARD


D


efined by the British Standards Institution (BSI) as a “concept which challenges organisations to re-think how their resources aremanaged to create financial, environmental and social benefits”, the


circular economy is about thinking onmore environmental terms and reaping the rewards from the prudent use of the resources available. Creating a standard that can be referred to when


adopting this approach was a challenging task, since adopting a circular economy is the corporate equivalent of an individualmaking a particular lifestyle choice. There aremany options that can be taken and judgements on what’s right and wrong can at times be somewhat nebulous. Recognising this, the new standard is not


prescriptive but rather a guide, as reflected in its title “BS8001:2017: Framework for implementing the principles of the circular economy in organisations – guide”. According to the standards organisation, BS8001


was developed tomeetmutually beneficial goals by providing guiding principles for organisations and individuals to consider and implementmore sustainable practices. Split into two parts, the standard examines the


principles of a circular economy: why it is important and why organisations should consider moving towards amore circular and sustainable mode of operation by keeping products, components andmaterials at their highest utility and value at all times and by being restorative and regenerative by design. The second part sets out how these principles can


be implemented within an organisational context. This section forms the bulk of the standard and offers guiding principles, a flexible implementation framework and supporting guidance. The circular economy principles are set out by the


BSI in a collection of abstract nouns: Systems Thinking, Innovation, Stewardship, Collaboration, Value Optimisation and Transparency. But these are the global overriding principles. As the standard delves into the detail, the way in which a circular economy operates becomesmuch clearer. The standard defines each term, has a glossary and is well illustrated with helpful schematics. The second part of the standard goes into the


flexible implementation of a circular economy and this takes amore pragmatic approach, which companies can follow to improve their chances of a successful implementation. Comprising eight stages fromproject scoping through to delivery and


56 /// Environmental Engineering /// October 2017


monitoring, the guidance is not so far removed fromthe stepsmost companies would take to manage any successful project, including the examination of feasibility and themaking of a business case to support the project. This practical approach to the standard is where


the value lies. After initially helping to define the circular economy and spark ideas for how it can be used in an organisation, the standard gives clear guidance on how it can then be delivered. BS8001:2017 isn’t just for large organisations. It


can be implemented at any level within any size of company. Like other general standards, such as QualityManagement or SecurityManagement, the document is long and it will require a “champion” within the company to take control of it, examine its contents in depth and oversee its implementation. The move to a circular economy is a significant


opportunity for businesses and organisations of all sizes. According to BSI, by contributing to a resource efficient and low-carbon economy, costs and supply chain risks are reduced. Further benefits for businesses which choose to implement BS8001 include improved resilience, new revenue streams, and enhanced corporate sustainability credentials. According to David Fatscher, head of


sustainability at the BSI, BS8001 was developed to enable organisations to take practical actions to realise the economic and social benefits of the circular economy. “Resource productivity is at the heart of the


government’s new industrial strategy and demonstrates how standards can be considered business improvement tools which help organisations unlock the untapped potential of sustainable growth,” he concluded. EE


 Circular economy yields major organisational benefits


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60