Major £30m national circular economy research programme launches

It aims to deliver environmental and economic benefits by helping industry and society to use fewer resources and reuse and recover products and materials instead of disposing of them after use

The Big Zero report

A major research programme supported by a £30 million investment aimed at catalysing the UK’s shift towards a circular economy has been launched.

The National Interdisciplinary Circular Economy Research (NICER) programme, supported by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and being delivered in partnership with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), encompasses 34 universities and 200 industry partners.

They aim to deliver environmental and economic benefits by helping industry and society to use fewer resources and reuse and recover products and materials instead of disposing of them after use.

The programme is formed of the National Interdisciplinary Circular Economy Hub (CE-Hub) led by the University of Exeter and five national research centres.

CE Hub Co-Lead Professor Peter Hopkinson said: “The UK economy consumes over one billion tonnes of materials every year, or around 17 tonnes per person, contributing to carbon emissions, a huge amount of unnecessary waste and environmental damage.

“This is set to continue to grow unless we take radical action to shift the current linear economy towards a circular economy. This programme will show how this can be done at speed and scale.”

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