The Next Big Paradigm Shift: From Linear to Circular Economy

Growing Blue; World Business Council for Sustainable Development and World Wide Fund for Nature

This event will be webcasted live - visit SIWI Video Hub more viewing and sharing options.


The linear economy is reaching the limits of a finite supply of resources, including water and energy. Circular economy thinking offers promising new perspectives for a renewed social and economic dynamic, where population and economic growth are balanced with environmental protection.


Moving away from the traditional consumptive models requires an increase in recycling and reuse of materials and water. It also demands creativity to overcome the divide between industry and community, and the silos of water, energy and resource management. Exploring such largely untouched spaces will make it possible to transform the mismatch between resources and growth into an exciting new economic, social and environmental revolution. In order to achieve this, we need to change our thinking and address these issues in a collaborative manner.


All actors  in the water world are essential in this new dynamic, to better resource the world. Forward looking institutions and stakeholders are invited to join this pioneering dialogue rooted in holistic thinking, to determine how to ramp up the circular economy beyond the silos of water, energy and waste, and how to build bridges among industries, municipalities and civil society.

14:00 Paradigm Shift and Exciting New Dynamic
          Mr. Laurent Auguste, Veolia

14:15 The Water-Resources-Energy Nexus: Towards Circular Economy
           Dr. Martin Stuchtey, McKinsey & Co.

14:55 Panel: Gathering Promising Experiences
          Moderator: Mr. Stuart Orr, WWF

  •     Mr. Joppe Cramwinckle, WBCSD
  •     Mr. Jason Morrison, CEO Water Mandate
  •     Mr. Carlo Galli, Nestlé
  •     Mr. Jacob Illeris, Veolia
  •     Mr. Diego Rodriguez, World Bank


16:00 Coffee break


16:15 Panel: Making the Best of Good Ideas
          Moderator: Mr. Ed Pinero, Growing Blue

  •     Ms. Anna Halpern-Lande, Shell
  •     Ms. Kari Vigerstol, Alliance for Water Stewardship, TNC
  •     Mr. Kjell Øyvind Pedersen, IVAR-IKS, Stavanger Municipality
  •   Mr. Johannes-Bastiaan Mohrmann, 2030 Water Resource Group/India

17:20 Wrap-up 
          Mr. Laurent Auguste, Veolia
17:30 Close of Seminar


Not available yet.

Regulatory frameworks, policies, and risk cultures

Political levels are faced with numerous threats, being they security, unemployment, inter alia. But the World cannot manage these without growth. The current economy is about mass production, and is not resource efficient because it did not have to till now: everything is optimized towards linear economy. Although projects finance still show positive under the current interest rates structure, the cost of sourcing the necessary materials meets historical highs, meeting the limits of the linear economy.


"Bastiaan Morhman: Reuse is not only finance, but also risk allocation between demand and supply side: how do you transact between municipalities and industries? Who wants to chair the process? Our contribution is the development of such knowledge."


The Circular Economy is able to provide the needed robustness for policies and project development. The Circular Economy needs a combination of regulations and incentives, and an increased understanding of the true cost of energy and water. The products liability, the European resource efficiency platform all lead some regions like the Netherlands, Aquitaine (France), NY, Copenhagen, to become Circular Economy labs. We see a lot of the earlier principles of Integrated Water Resource Management, wastewater reuse, leakage reduction, and now Circular Economy, being incorporated into the projects worldwide. To scale up the circular economy, the challenges are several folds:


How expedite the necessary reforms for these policies to take place in countries, despite the silos between ministries which lack integrated planning & investments, e.g. energy not taking water into account?
The current water pricing does not reflect the cost of scarcity & externalities, most of the time resulting in excessive pay-back times for looping: the current political interest is behind the linear economy, so how establish the cost & benefits of the Circular Economy, and find the right rationale for political systems to remove perverse subsidies?
Project planners, the industry may master the technics and rationale of foot-printing, and be ready to team beyond their fences, but don’t step forward as the expectation of the politicians are ways to high:  One needs to understand the risks politicians need to mitigate to promote the concepts of Circular Economy
In financial engineering, how to select who amongst stakeholders is in the best position to undertake certain types of risks?



Time horizon and urgency

Laurent Auguste: We need to close the loops between water, energy, natural resources uses; between industries and communities, through new partnerships; and we need to better understand the links between technology and behavioral changes.


Specificity is the biggest obstacle to the Circular Economy to fully develop: situations are quite heterogeneous and specific, needing solutions to be studied and shaped locally, and consensus to be elaborated across multiple levels both within and between organizations. Everything has to be designed over time, often needing 15 years from idea to full-scale.


The governments’decisions contributes to structuring the economy and therefore, the Circular Economy development. It can take the form of regulations, obligation to recycle a given percentage, or tariffs. Beyond the explicit governmental decisions is the common understanding of the need to shift approaches. The participants hope the seminar contributes to plant the seeds of the Circular Economy in the water sector.

Sunday 14:00-17:30
Room K16/17
Register to the week