ICLEI’s Green Circular Cities Coalition (GCCC) facilitated the Chinese cities of Foshan and Changchun to join the London Circular Economy Week on 10-14 June 2019. Delegates from the two Chinese cities had dialogues with the Recycling Association and stakeholders, participated in networking activities with British local governments, and made site visits to the London Renew Centre.
The annual London Circular Economy Week 2019, organized and supported by Circular London and the London Waste and Recycling Board, gathered consulting firms, universities, enterprises and small and medium businesses, and startups to host different events parallelly in different places in London. Activities include brainstorming workshops, circular economy tour, circular cities round-tables discussion and networking events.
Two Chinese cities of Foshan and Changchun participated in the week-long event, and exchanged thoughts and practices with stakeholders and local government officials in the UK.
Foshan city, an ICLEI Member aiming to optimize its municipal waste management system, exchanged their ideas on waste separation and collection scheme, waste reduction, and potential policy instruments with the British city of Oxford.
Representatives from Changchun, a member of the Green Circular Cities Coalition ambitious to becoming a center of sustainable development in the Northeast Asian region, met experts from University College London and had a thorough discussion on possible solutions making mobile phones more circular, by facilitating redesigning and reuse market development.
Delegations discussed solutions to make products circular.
Delegations also visited the London Renew Centre, the leading office furniture and IT remanufacturing and refurbishment facility in the UK. Amazed by the cleanliness of the workplace and the revenue generated from remanufacturing and refurbishment, representatives from Foshan and Changchun also talked to the British stakeholders to explore the feasibility of replicating the model in their cities, and how they could improve workplace in China.
Through a site visit to the London Renew Centre, delegations learned about the process of refurbishing unwanted tables into new ones.
The Circular Week is closed by the global annual summit of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, an official partner of ICLEI on the circular development pathway. Local government officials are impressed by the innovative format of the summit and the refreshing means to convey messages. Delegates also met representatives from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to exchange insights and circular economy development in their cities.
*This knowledge exchange program is sponsored by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, and co-organized by ICLEI East Asia and the China Association of Circular Economy. In addition to the delegates from Foshan and Changchun City, representatives from the China Packaging Federation, the China National Resources Recycling Association, the China Petroleum and Chemical Industry Federation, and Nanchang City also participated in the program.