Circular Economy (CE)

Circular Economy (CE)

At the heart of sustainable resource management lies the need to catalyse the development of the Circular Economy. Designing out waste and managing the economic, reputational, social and environmental risks of sourcing, using and cycling material resources is a core theme for IEMA and a key requirement for the future of society.

While managing waste in a legal and effective manner can prove to be a major on-going challenge for business, far greater opportunities lie in moving organisational thinking from waste to resource management and the Circular Economy.

Practical actions deliver financial and environmental returns, and involve prioritising and optimising action around four key resource management areas to secure the development of the Circular Economy:


  • Efficiency: making the most of material resources while minimising the production of waste
  • Effectiveness: optimising resource efficiency to avoid environmental harm and drive societal benefits
  • Security: responsibly sourcing a reliable and affordable supply of materials
  • Cycling: ensuring unused and end of use materials are returned to productive use.

On the Horizon

Find out about the key trends and big issues related to progressing the transition to the Circular Economy, including practical guidance on move from waste to resource management and IEMA’s role in developing standards to integrate the Circular Economy in organisations.

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CE Learning

Get access to IEMA’s guidance, webinars, tools, articles and other CPD specifically tailored for CE professionals, and find links to other key advice.

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Engage with CE

Find out about the CE Network a member led collaborative initiative designed to generate and share information and guidance on improving the sustainable use of resources.

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Access Practical Advice

From Waste to Resources: Implementing Sustainable Resource Management in Your Business

A report written with you in mind as you work to improve your understanding of waste and resource management. The second half of the report sets out phased practical actions you can apply to directly improve your organisations resource management performance, as well as initiatives to ensure wider business processes support and enable successful delivery.

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Engage Senior Management

Business Briefing: Sustainable Resource Management 2014

This briefing provides you useful information to enable you to make the case for your sustainable resource management initiatives to senior management and other colleagues.

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Make Progress through 14001

Management Briefing: Progressing SRM through ISO 14001 2017

The new management framework of the revised ISO 14001 standard provides the ideal opportunity and approach to stimulate efficient and effective use of resources. With over 300,000 organisations worldwide certificated to ISO 14001, this presents a significant opportunity to enhance global uptake of CE approaches. This in-depth briefing provides you with useful insight into how to use your EMS to drive sustainable resource management initiatives and the transition to the Circular Economy across your organisation and its value-chain.

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Review Your Progress

RAMP Tool

Use our tool to quickly review the maturity of your organisation’s progress to date.

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IEMA Fellows CE Working Group

IEMA Fellows Working Group on the Circular Economy – recommendation paper for the Resources & Waste Strategy

A working group populated exclusively by IEMA Fellows made eight key recommendations to the UK Government as part of the upcoming Resources and Waste Strategy. While the Government developed the strategy the IEMA Fellows Working Group on the Circular Economy submitted a detailed contribution to Defra. The group outlined their perspectives, recommendations and critical considerations on resource utilisation, effectiveness and security, fiscal measures plus the role of data, skills and the Sustainable Development Goals.

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