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90 – Does circular mean it’s sustainable?

Circular Economy Podcast - Ep90 Does circular mean sustainable?

Does circular mean it’s sustainable? Or, are companies just using circular economy solutions to grow their business (and their footprints)?

In this episode, Catherine Weetman wants to shine a light on something that’s been worrying her.

Over the last few years, she’s come to realise that the circular economy is not fit for purpose. It’s not helping create the future we need. Instead, it’s being watered down, and cherry picked. Catherine sees increasing numbers of businesses and policymakers choosing strategies that ARE circular – but aren’t improving sustainability. She’ll be talking about  loopholes, rather than loops…

Catherine says “I think we’re at a critical turning point. We need to evolve the circular economy into a framework that supports the future we want – the future we know is possible.

If we don’t, we’re letting all our work, our innovations, our struggles, go to waste. (And you don’t need me to remind you that waste shouldn’t exist in a circular economy!)”

Podcast host Catherine Weetman is a circular economy business advisor, workshop facilitator, speaker and writer.  Her award-winning book: A Circular Economy Handbook: How to Build a More Resilient, Competitive and Sustainable Business includes lots of practical examples and tips on getting started.  Catherine founded Rethink Global in 2013, to help businesses use circular, sustainable approaches to build a better business (and a better world).

Stay in touch for free insights and updates… 

Read on for a summary of the podcast and links to the people, organisations and other resources we mention.

 Don’t forget, you can subscribe to the podcast series on iTunes, Google Podcasts, PlayerFM, Spotify, TuneIn, or search for “circular economy” in your favourite podcast app.  Stay in touch to get free insights and updates, direct to your inbox…

You can also use our interactive, searchable podcast index to find episodes by sector, by region or by circular strategy. Plus, there is now a regular Circular Economy Podcast newsletter, so you get the latest episode show notes and links delivered to your inbox on Sunday morning, each fortnight. The newsletter includes a link to the episode page on our website, with an audio player. You can subscribe by clicking this link to update your preferences.

Links we mention in the episode:

Interview Transcript

Click here to open the transcript…

Want to dig deeper?

Why not buy Catherine’s award-winning book, A Circular Economy Handbook: How to Build a More Resilient, Competitive and Sustainable Business. This comprehensive guide uses a bottom-up, practical approach, and includes hundreds of real examples from around the world, to help you really ‘get’ the circular economy.  Even better, you’ll be inspired with ideas to make your own business more competitive, resilient and sustainable. 

Please let us know what you think of the podcast – and we’d love it if you could leave us a review on iTunes, or wherever you find your podcasts.  Or send us an email

Podcast music

Thanks to Belinda O’Hooley and Heidi Tidow, otherwise known as the brilliant, inventive and generous folk duo, O’Hooley & Tidow for allowing me to use the instrumentals from the live version of Summat’s Brewin’ as music for the podcast. You can find the whole track (inspired by the Copper Family song “Oh Good Ale”) on their album, also called Summat’s Brewin’.  Or, follow them on Twitter.

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