EQO-NIXUS is actively involved in the deployment of circular economy principles in developing countries and the EU and has implemented, in consortium with Factor and Inèdit, a technical assistance project to define and promote the principles of the Circular and Blue Economy in 11 countries in the Caribbean region.
The project is funded by the Inter-American Development Bank, it began to be implemented in January 2018 and is now nearing completion. The target regions were Barbados, Bahamas, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica, and Trinidad & Tobago and islands territories in Belize, Costa Rica, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama.
These territories face unique sustainable development challenges. Remote geography, limited land area and resulting natural resource availability culminate in material, water and energy restraints, which challenge the ability for sustainable economic growth. Several countries also face disproportionately higher risk to sea level rise, record high temperatures, extended periods of drought and torrential rains among other impacts of climate change.
In that context, the Circular Economy offers an improvement over the linear economy: In a linear model, raw materials are extracted, processed, sold, consumed and mostly disposed as waste, with economic and environmental losses associated. In contrast, in a circular model, new techniques are proposed to reutilize waste as a raw material for new products and processes, minimizing its negative impact for the environment.
Within this project, our Consortium defined the main elements of the Circular and Blue Economy in the particular context of territories within the Caribbean region, developing the tools necessary for private and public sector stakeholders to assess progress and to prescribe solutions to challenges and best capitalize on opportunities while bolstering climate change resilience. The framework is aiming to create sustainable development growth through addressing priority areas that include developing basic infrastructure, creating sustainable ocean industries, and promoting key sectors for blue and circular economy. Our work also proposed new concept proposals for financing a sustainable economy and climate mitigation initiatives at regional level.
[Circular Economy Graphic: Cambridge Judge Business School]