This webinar looks at the intersection between Life Cycle Thinking (LCT), Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Circular Economy (CE). CE provides a strategic framework for closed-loop material flows and a gateway to LCT, whilst LCA complements CE by assessing environmental impacts. These concepts and tools are particularly relevant to the waste sector, which has a crucial role managing waste streams and keeping resources in use.

As Aotearoa New Zealand transitions from a linear ‘take-make-waste economy’ to a Circular Economy, it will become increasingly important to assess change impacts, avoid burden shifting and understand trade-offs. A critical part of a product life cycle is the ‘end of life’ phase – dealing with waste. One of the key Circular Economy strategies identified by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation (EMF) is to ‘design out waste and pollution’, accompanied by ‘keep products and materials in use’ and ‘regenerate natural systems’.

This webinar discusses opportunities for the use of LCA to assess and improve New Zealand’s waste systems in the context of product stewardship. It will also provide some real-world examples relevant to the New Zealand waste management and resource recovery to demonstrate linear vs circular systems.