event

Making the world go round: Financing the circular economy

This event has already taken place
When
18:00 - 21:00 15 February, 2024
Where
113 Chancery Lane
London

Summary

Organised jointly by Green Alliance and the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, this event explored the role of finance in powering the change to a more circular economy.

Half of global emissions result from extracting and processing raw materials for products, as well as food and fuel, according to the UN, so it will be impossible to tackle climate change without a fundamental rethink of raw material use.

But using fewer resources and extending the lifetime of products is not only good for the planet, it makes economic sense. This is what the circular economy is about. A circular economy would bring greater GDP growth and more jobs, lowering an economy’s exposure to volatile material markets. An increasing number of businesses see these economic opportunities and are developing approaches with climate resilience and circular systems in mind.

Moving to a circular economy that preserves resources at their highest value for as long as possible will take concerted effort to unlock the potential of new business models. At the UK government level, policies such as ‘Maximising resources, minimising waste’ and the Green Finance Strategy should help to translate these ambitions into reality. But are they enough to ensure the funding needed and remove tax and legal barriers? How will they translate ambition into concrete action?

This is not only the responsibility of the government. A truly circular economy requires a new perspective, experimentation and daring to shape a new future. Bankers, investors and others in the financial sector must play a key role in driving the transition. But how are they integrating the growing risks of resource depletion and insecure supply chains into their modelling? How could a different approach by financial and investment institutions evolve to improve certainty for cash flow for circular businesses, long term stability and supply chain contracts?

The panel discussion included an audience Q&A and was followed by drinks and networking.

Keynote: Afke van Rijn, director general for the environment and international affairs, Government of the Netherlands

Panellists

  • Chair: Libby Peake, head of resource policy, Green Alliance
  • Agnes Estibals, deputy director, business decarbonisation and energy transformation policy, DESNZ
  • Charlotte Morley, founder and CEO, The Little Loop
  • David Greenfield, Founding Partner and Executive Chair, etsaW Ventures
  • Guy de Sévaux, team lead bioeconomy and circular economy, Invest-NL

Afke van Rijn (Keynote Speaker)

director general for the environment and international affairs, Government of the Netherlands

Libby Peake (Chair)

head of resource policy, Green Alliance

Agnes Estibals

deputy director, business decarbonisation and energy transformation policy, DESNZ

Charlotte Morley

CEO, thelittleloop & Great British Sustainability Entrepreneur of the year 2022

David Greenfield

Founding Partner and Executive Chair, etsaW Ventures

Guy de Sévaux

Biobased and Circular business development team lead, Invest-NL

Images

Making the world go round: Financing the circular economy

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