The realization of a circular economy has come into focus in the EU and other countries, as a key element in the a move towards sustainable use of resources. This is a necessary transformation to meet the current environmental and climate challenges.
However, one important, but often disregarded part of a circular economy is the role of hazardous chemicals. Hazardous chemicals are used in everyday products and when recycled, new products may contain these chemicals.
The EU’s circular economy action plan points out electronics as one of the key product value chains for the transition to a circular economy. Within the sector, a review of EU restrictions to hazardous substances has been a particularly highlighted action.
There is now a range of policies pertaining to a toxic-free environment and circular economy being developed at the EU level.
These include the new Chemicals Strategy, an updated Ecodesign Regulation (including the development of digital products passports), a new Restrictions Roadmap and a Safe and Sustainable by Design framework, to name a few.
Stockholm University (department of Environmental Science) are, together with Uppsala University and Trossa, carrying out parallel studies within the research project, which is funded by Formas, Sweden’s government research council for sustainable development.
Trossa's research project, strategies and definitions for a non-toxic circular economy, focuses on how companies and other stakeholders in the consumer electronics industry respond to the developing requirements for a non-toxic circular economy.
Stockholm University is the leading partner of the research project and carrying out a study focusing on building materials in a non-toxic circular economy.
Uppsala University is analyzing the legal framework for a non-toxic circular economy.
Trossa's study, Strategies and definitions for a non-toxic circular economy, explores definitions
for contributing to a “non-toxic” circular economy, focusing on consumer
Our ambition is to map out how companies throughout the consumer electronic value chain (producers, procurers, actors in reuse, refurbish, repair and recyclers) define “non-toxic” - what substances, groups of substances or properties that are considered to be included in such a concept. We will also investigate strategies and approaches that companies apply to this area of work. This, in turn, is compared with the definitions used and strategies implied in the developing body of policies and legislation.
The overall objective is to provide insights regarding how the consumer electronics industry define and approach the concept of a non-toxic circular economy. Based on this, the ambition is to provide recommendations on potential needed clarification of this concept, informing the vivid policy development currently underway in the European union.
Within this study, Trossa will carry out an interview study with companies and other stakeholders in the consumer electronics industry.
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Erika has a background in political science and environmental management and policy. She has been a research contributor and project lead in several previous research projects within the field of chemicals and circular economy.
Lars has a background in environmental sciences and has extensive background in chemicals management and strategies.
Hélène is the founding partner and CEO of Trossa and has contributed as a researcher and research communicator in several research project, in addition to 15+ years of experience in sustainability consulting.