Ten municipalities to become forerunners of the circular economy

Press release 2017-11-20 at 11:05

Ten Finnish municipalities − Ii, Jyväskylä, Kuopio, Lahti, Lappeenranta, Porvoo, Riihimäki, Rovaniemi, Turku and Vantaa − have committed themselves to promoting the circular economy in an ambitious and concrete way. As the first Finnish municipal network, they intend to implement the goals of the national waste plan by recycling at least 55 per cent of their municipal waste, by utilising at least 70 per cent of construction and demolition waste as materials, and by decreasing the amount of waste that they generate to the level that it was in 2000 by 2020.

The municipalities are free to select the methods that they will use to promote the circular economy in their regions. These will initiate new business, activate their citizens and create new collaborative opportunities with different actors.

“Even on a global scale, the plans of these municipalities are ambitious. For example, they're planning to recover precious metals from electronic waste, utilise the side flows of the forest and mining industry as a replacement for concrete, create a bioindustry park and circular economy cluster, transform a landfill into a renewable energy production area, and construct a smart and low-carbon infrastructure. Many of the municipalities also want to involve their citizens in the development of the circular economy,” says Head of Unit Tuuli Myllymaa from the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE).

SYKE and Motiva selected the pioneering municipalities from a group of twenty applicants. Their selection criteria included the commitments made by the municipalities during the application phase as well as the measures that the municipalities have utilised to promote the circular economy so far.

The Circular Economy Service Centre supports the work of the network

Selecting the network of forerunners is part of the “Circwaste − Towards a Circular Economy” project, which is being coordinated by SYKE. The seven-year project is part of the EU Life programme and has a budget of almost 19 million euros. The goal of the project is to promote the circular economy with practical measures in construction, agriculture, industry, the food chain, and households

The municipal network will be supported by the expert services of the Circular Economy Service Centre, which is run by SYKE and Motiva. The Service Centre will also monitor the municipalities’ progress with the help of various indicators. The municipalities hope that they will be able to network with the actors in the field and generate publicity for their activities that promote the circular economy.

Further information

Head of Unit Tuuli Myllymaa, Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), tel. +358 29 525 1437, firstname.lastname@ymparisto.fi

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