In South-East Asia, cities are the engine for job creation and lifting millions out of poverty. But cities also perpetuate the current ‘take-make-dispose’ model of living that current urban systems are built on.
Because of this system, the world is suffering from a waste problem – materials, energy, water and labour are wasted while pollution, environmental toxicity and climate change are exacerbated due to growing mounds of waste being dumped into landfills or natural ecosystems. The Semakau Landfill in Singapore for instance is set to reach full capacity by 2035.
The circular economy reimagines how our key urban systems like energy, waste, water, food and mobility can be engineered to be regenerative, rather than exploitative. There is a US $4.5 trillion dollar opportunity in the circular economy space, for start-ups and enterprising individuals to find business solutions that transform the way we live our lives. We can help our cities become more circular, less wasteful and more sustainable, increasing the quality of life for residents while continuing to contribute to a thriving economy.
Innovation is key to solving the myriad of problems involving wastage.