School of Business and Economics


14 Nov 2022

UK’s net-zero targets supported by Loughborough research into the circular economy

Researchers from the School of Business & Economics, Professor Andrew Vivian and Dr Suzana Grubnic, co-lead capital investment schemes into Circular Economy projects focusing on facilitating greener construction materials, supported by Research Associate Dr Longxiang Zhao.

Following the recent COP27 summit in Egypt, generating funding for circular economy projects and implementing the use of greener energy have been recognised as notable points that can help deliver the UK’s promise to reach net-zero emissions by 2040.

Loughborough University has continued to support the reduction of the UK’s carbon footprint by contributing to the Interdisciplinary Circular Economy Research Centre for Mineral-based Construction Materials, and the Interdisciplinary Centre for Circular Chemical Economy, both part of a £32m Government project.

The Circular Economy package policy statement in 2020 suggested that the UK is focused on developing a strategy that can lead to a more circular economy, resulting in various environmental, financial, and social impacts.

Professor Andrew Vivian commented: “In the UK, one area constraining the transition to a circular economy is accessing sufficient capital investment. However, it is one which should be prioritized given the huge potential impact it can bring”.

Dr Suzana Grubnic followed these comments, saying: “The development of an accounting-sustainability tool that incorporates environmental information has the potential to unlock funds from external and internal sources.”

“We are currently exploring how to embed different circular economy principles into a capital appraisal tool that helps minimize environmental degradation.”

Dr Longxiang Zhao continued with: “This would help further stimulate much needed investment into circular economy projects, with increasing participation from mid-market investors.

“We also anticipate that circular business models, such as product as a service, will become increasingly attractive and targeted investment can support this.”

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