First recommendations report released by Circular Economy Ministerial Advisory Group

    By Liam Taylor  April 24th, 2024

    The report aims to support the Australian Government in delivering a circular economy for Australia, with this iteration focused on recommendations for boosting the country’s domestic manufacturing capabilities through reuse, repair and recycling.

    Established in February 2023, the Circular Economy Ministerial Advisory Group provides advice to the Australian Government on the transition to a more circular economy. The Advisory Group’s first interim report, released today, summarises their early findings and outlines strategic interventions to drive the circular economy transformation forward.

    The report focuses on Australia’s domestic manufacturing capabilities and how both this sector and Australia’s economy as a whole can be improved by incorporating greater reuse, repair and recycling. Recommended interventions include:

    • A Productivity Commission Inquiry to investigate how resource efficiency supports economic growth.

    • Developing a National Circular Economy Framework and a power to set specific circularity standards for products and materials.

    • Introducing a national ‘recycled content first’ policy to drive recycled content markets.

    • Setting up sector-based circular economy targets and embed circular economy principles in key climate policies.

    In a sign of the Advisory Group’s influence, the Australian Government announced the first national sustainable procurement policy at the release of the interim report, which will be phased in from 1 July 2024. Other topics covered by the report include national policy, economics and investment settings, net zero, the built environment, and design and consumption of products.

    “I am pleased to present our interim report, encapsulating our initial advice to the Australian Government on opportunities to drive Australia’s transition to a circular economy,” said Professor John Thwaites, Group Chair, in a statement.

    “The report shows how essential circular economy actions are for reducing waste, pollution and carbon emissions. Our recommendations will incentivise innovation and shape new markets for circular economy products.”

    The Advisory Group meets regularly to ensure a shared understanding of the relevant barriers, trends and opportunities for Australia’s transition, consulting widely and seeking advice from independent experts ahead of each meeting.Submissions are welcome from stakeholders interested in contributing to the Advisory Group’s workplan, and can be made at any time via the secretariat:

    Read the interim report in full here.

    Liam Taylor

    Prior to joining Planet Ark Liam spent his time studying global environmental issues, travelling Southeast Asia on the cheap and working for a sustainable property management company in Bali, Indonesia. Joining the communications team at Planet Ark, he hopes to inspire positive environmental behaviour through effective and positive messaging.

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