Advoacting for a circular tomorrow

A circular future requires a systemic legislative shift where waste is seen and used as a sustainable resource. Businesses that share knowledge about the opportunities with a circular economy, help decision-makers eliminate unnecessary regulatory barriers standing in the way of the transition.

21 May 2024

– If we are serious about the transition to a circular economy, we need a systemic shift inlegislation. Not just minor changes to a patchwork of legislation. We need to move from seeing waste as a problem we need to eliminate, towards being a sustainable source of raw materials, says Susanna Lind, Head of Public Affairs and Government Relations Sweden.

One of the major challenges in a large-scale shift to a circular economy is the legislative approach to waste. Currently, materials originating from waste often fall into a separate legislative category that significantly limits the possibility to use waste as a source of raw materials.

Susanna Lind, Head of Public Affairs and Government Relations Sweden.

The past years has introduced a lot of new EU legislation concerning actors in the recycling business, including regulation on the collection of packaging and bio waste. The recycling goals on the EU level are very ambitious and have been difficult for several countries to live up to. Sweden has tackled this challenge by hasty nationalimplementa tionsleading to an increased administrative  burden and circumstances that hinders the much-needed implementation of circular and sustainable solutions.

– We very much welcome increased regulation on waste management. At the same time, we see a lot of potential in including the private sector more in the legislative process. This could have helped making principles on circularity a priority fornational implementation measures, says Susanna. 

During 2023, the volatile and unpredictable world has created an increased focus on vulnerabilities, such as ensuring access to resources even in times of high uncertainty. Ragn-Sells has noticed an increased interest from politicians on how the private sector can contribute to reducing Sweden’s vulnerability, including access tocritical nutrients such as phosphorus.

– Our strategy for advocacy is to focus on presenting concrete solutions to society’s challenges. We find this a much more effective way to make decision-makers understand challenges, opportunities, and needs. Rather than pointing out problems and expect politicians to solve them for us, says Susanna Lind.