Developing policy solutions for a circular economy

Towards one planet living and net zero


A circular economy is one in which we value materials and keep them in use for as long as possible, while minimising harm to the environment from their extraction, processing, use and disposal. By shifting to an economy where waste and harmful materials are designed out and repair, reuse, remanufacturing and high quality recycling are the norm, we can create new jobs and increase the resilience of supply chains.

Since 2012, we’ve investigated the policy solutions needed to transition to a circular economy in the UK.

Our work includes:

  • Convening the Circular Economy Task Force (CETF), which is a forum for policy, innovation and business thinking on resource use;
  • Working with researchers to understand public perceptions of the circular economy and which policies could be most effective.

Circular Economy Task Force

Since 2012, we have pioneered new approaches to preventing and reducing waste with our business consortium, the Circular Economy Task Force (CETF). It is currently chaired by Colin Church, chief executive of IOM3.

With the support of the CETF, Green Alliance conducts independent, objective research and analysis to inform resources policy, convening stakeholders from government, civil society and industry to develop and test ideas.

The task force has had a significant impact on government policy. For example, Defra’s 2018 resources and waste strategy adopted many of its recommendations, including harmonising recycling services and implementing an extended producer responsibility regime.

Read our most recent reports:

Academic collaboration on resource efficiency policy

Improving the efficiency of resources could save up to 28% of the UK’s total CO2 emissions. Public buy-in will be an important part of the success or failure of innovative proposals to improve resource efficiency, so policymakers’ decisions should be informed by evidence on public attitudes and engagement.

In conjunction with the school of psychology at Cardiff University and members of the CIE-MAP consortium, we worked with key decision makers to set out which resource efficiency policies cut the most emissions and are the most popular with the public. Significantly, we found that measures offering the biggest carbon savings, and over which the government has most control, are those that are most popular with the public.

Read our reports:


We’re grateful to the following partners for supporting our work.

The current members of the task force are SUEZ, Kingfisher, NCPEN, Zero Waste Scotland and PwC.

Corplex joined Green Alliance’s Circular Economy Task Force in 2021 because it is giving voice to the most effective ways to make the circular economy a reality, through its research, membership and connection to policy makers.

Lucas van der Schalk, CEO, Corplex

I have really valued working with Green Alliance on the resources agenda in recent years through their Circular Economy Task Force. It has made an influential contribution, pushing the government to be more ambitious, and is genuinely ground breaking in its approach, with its mix of sectoral interests and collaboration.

Dr Adam Read, external affairs director, SUEZ recycling and recovery UK
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