Material energy nexus

Session 1: Material consequences of the energy transition
Elmer Rietveld, Senior Scientist Circular Economy and Resource Efficiency at TNO, the Netherlands Organisation for applied scientific research
Mathy Stanislaus, World Resources Institute, Circular Economy Fellow
(to be announced), CML

The main drivers for a transition towards a more circular economy are the reduction of the environmental impact of our material consumption and the reduction of our vulnerability and dependence on raw materials. Whereas the current focus is on 5 so called ‘priorities’ (Consumer goods, manufacturing industry, Construction, Plastics and Biomass), the impact of the energy transition has not been addressed intensely. Though the energy transition is leading to massive material input worldwide, the impact of that material input has not been taken into account in the current government policies. This enhanced material input raises questions about long-term availability of materials and changing geopolitical dependencies.

In this light, it is relevant to discuss what the circular perspective is on this transition and its consequences: is a maintenance, repair and recycling infrastructure required for reducing dependencies, and is that already in place? On the other hand, the energy transition itself will have consequences for the goals and ambitions from a circular economy perspective: the CO2-impact of material production will decrease upon changing the energy mix, whereas the ambition of a 50% material reduction in 2030 may be at stake.

Session 2: The impact of the energy transition on CE polices
Elmer Rietveld, Senior Scientist Circular Economy and Resource Efficiency at TNO, the Netherlands Organisation for applied scientific research
Mathy Stanislaus, World Resources Institute, Circular Economy Fellow
(to be announced), CML

The main drivers for a transition towards a more circular economy are the reduction of the environmental impact of our material consumption and the reduction of our vulnerability and dependence on raw materials. Whereas the current focus is on 5 so called ‘priorities’ (Consumer goods, manufacturing industry, Construction, Plastics and Biomass), the impact of the energy transition has not been addressed intensely. Though the energy transition is leading to massive material input worldwide, the impact of that material input has not been taken into account in the current government policies. This enhanced material input raises questions about long-term availability of materials and changing geopolitical dependencies.

In this light, it is relevant to discuss what the circular perspective is on this transition and its consequences: is a maintenance, repair and recycling infrastructure required for reducing dependencies, and is that already in place? On the other hand, the energy transition itself will have consequences for the goals and ambitions from a circular economy perspective: the CO2-impact of material production will decrease upon changing the energy mix, whereas the ambition of a 50% material reduction in 2030 may be at stake.