Navigating the circular economy: A conversation with Dame Ellen MacArthur

Ellen MacArthur shares her vision of the circular economy (McKinsey, 4:30)

How can we build a sustainable future? English sailor and world record holder for the fastest solo around-the-world sailing voyage, Dame Ellen MacArthur, advocates moving away from the prevalent linear approach to the global economy towards a different, circular approach. In the circular economy, rather than gathering resources and using them until nothing remains, the resources at our disposal are endlessly recovered and reused.

In a circular economy, everything used to manufacture a product is subsequently decomposed and reutilized. According to MacArthur, this system is both ecological and profitable: reusing materials means more profit for manufacturers as well as lower prices for consumers. The circular economy is an opportunity well worth seizing, and emerging markets, in particular, have much to gain by adopting such a system.

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Green Efficiency: Integrating the Environment into Business Strategy and Operations

Based on Better Green Business by Eric G. OLSON, Wharton School Publishing (November 2009), and the interviews with Peter Williams, CTO, Big Green Innovations, IBM, and Anne-Laure Denis, corporate environment manager, bioMérieux, May 2010.
Business Digest N° N° 207, June 2010