The circular economy is the concept of designing products and services so that they can be reused, repaired or recycled at the end of their life. This helps us to use our resources more efficiently and minimizes waste and emissions to the environment. The circular economy rejects the linear economy, which involves taking resources out of the earth and turning them into products and waste.
In eco-design, designers consider all stages of a product’s life cycle when designing new products or services so that they can be reused rather than thrown away after one use. Eco-design takes into account all stages of a product’s life cycle: manufacturing (including sourcing materials), distribution (including shipping), use/consumption, maintenance/repair/recovery (including recycling).
The circular economy rejects the linear economy, which involves taking resources out of the earth and turning them into products and waste.
The circular economy is a regenerative system in which resource input and waste, emission and energy leakage are minimized by slowing, closing and narrowing material cycles. The linear economy involves taking resources out of the earth and turning them into products and waste. This practice has led to the depletion of natural resources such as fossil fuels, minerals, timber and soil. By contrast, the circular economy aims to eliminate both the use of non-renewable materials that cannot be renewed on a human time scale (for example fossil fuels), as well as those that allow for their regeneration (for instance water).
It is important to note that this approach does not mean returning to old ways of doing things or relying on traditional methods only; rather it seeks to find innovative solutions using technology like 3D printing or biodegradable plastics from plants rather than petrochemicals
Eco – design means designing products and services that require minimal consumption of natural resources while minimizing waste and emissions to the environment.
- Design for the environment: Design products that are reusable, repairable, and recyclable.
- Design for reuse: Make things easy to use, with intuitive interfaces and appropriate defaults that give users the option of using your product in more than one way, such as using a product once then buying another one if they want to use it again (the toothbrush example). Also designing products so they can be reused by someone else if you decide not to bring them back yourself (the bike share example)
- Design for recycling/reuse/disassembly: This can be achieved through modular designs or interchangeable parts as well as encouraging re-purposing through open source licensing models and sharing resources on social media platforms instead of throwing away old stuff because there’s no other way (like asking people first before buying something new).
Eco-design takes into account all stages of a product’s life cycle.
Eco-design takes into account all stages of a product’s life cycle. The life cycle of a product refers to the whole process from manufacturing through use and disposal. The phases in this cycle are:
- design and development
- production, distribution and sale
- use (in which the product is consumed)
- recovery and recycling (which may be an element of reuse; either way it involves reusing materials that would otherwise be discarded or landfilled)
- disposal (the discarding or landfilling at end of life).
We can destroy less and use our resources more efficiently when we plan for it
In the language of circular design, a product is « designed for disassembly. » This means it can be taken apart easily, so that its components can be reused or repurposed. In other words, the product is designed from the ground up to not only be built using renewable resources but also to allow those resources to be reused over time.
An example would be a chair made from wood. It might use metal fasteners and screws, natural adhesives like glue or rubber bands, and an array of other materials besides wood itself—but once you’re done with it (maybe after sitting on it for years), you could take all those parts apart and make something else out of them. This becomes especially important in situations where there are limited resources available—like space travel or colonizing another planet—and recycling isn’t an option because there aren’t any nearby recycling centers capable of taking away large amounts of garbage at once!
Eco-design is an integral part of the circular economy. It means creating products that last longer and use fewer resources, and it can help us create a more sustainable world for future generations. Eco-design is beneficial for the environment, society and businesses.