Understanding the standards landscape
BSI carried out research in 2013, with support from BEIS and DEFRA to explore the role of standards and other tools to help organizations develop or improve their understanding of the concept.” The project discovered more than 200 standards related to specific areas of waste prevention and resource management but no formal standards that defined or focused entirely on the circular economy.
A stakeholder forum in 2014 to discuss the project’s findings concluded that a standard would be beneficial to help businesses turn the circular economy concept into practical action. Discussions with a number of businesses already attempting to take this route also revealed that a standard had the potential to bring multiple benefits. Such benefits were felt to include standardizing the use of certain terms currently open to interpretation and potential misuse, helping businesses identify what their role was, and providing clarity and direction on key issues.
As a result, BSI established a committee (SDS/1/10) in December 2014 responsible for standardization in the field of sustainable resource management. The committee has over 60 members, including representatives from the Green Alliance, Defra, the Scottish Executive, BEIS, the Welsh Government, WRAP, Innovate UK, The Centre for Sustainable Design at the University of Creative Arts, Resource Association as well as the Ellen MacArthur Foundation (EMF) and a number of organisations belonging to their CE100 Network and other industry bodies and experts.
The original research report and supporting annexes together with the stakeholder forum report are available to download below: