The new Circular Economy Innovation Network has held its first stakeholder meeting, with the NSW government initiative in its startup phase and aiming to identify opportunities to reduce and reuse waste.
The first meeting, according to a statement, was dominated by the scale and complexity of the challenge. The initiative is seeking to identify and map the opportunities for stakeholders – from across governments, industry, universities and not for profit groups – to link and create a circular economy “in which waste is valued as a resource”.
CEIN is headed by Professor Veena Sahajwalla, a materials engineer and inventor and Founding Director of the University of NSW’s Centre for Sustainable Materials Research and Technology (SMaRT).
“We can actually change the way things are done now in design, production and manufacturing to reduce waste, and we know we can use waste as a resource rather than for most of it to end up in tips,” said Sahajwalla in a statement
“By making the right connections between researchers, businesses and governments, we can play a significant role in developing a true circular economy in Australia.
“What is clear is that we need much greater coordination and connectivity across stakeholders to identify the opportunities and problems in getting a circular economy really going.
The first stakeholder meeting at UNSW was attended by 150, and emceed by Michael Sharpe, NSW and ACT Director of the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre.
CEIN was announced in February, and is supported by $1.5 million in state government funding.
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