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The circular economy and spatial freedom in cities

Authors: Luis Cecchi*, Hamburg University
Topics: Environment, Social Geography
Keywords: circular economy, spatial freedom, freedom, cities, infrastructure, social justice
Session Type: Paper
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


According to the OECD (2019), global material use is projected to more than double in 2060. The United Nations (2019) affirms that if no policy actions are taken, the equivalent of almost three planets would be needed to sustain lifestyles of the current population. Today, cities represent almost two-thirds of global energy demand (IEA, 2016) and produce up to 80% of greenhouse gas emissions (World Bank, 2010). The circular economy concept has been growing in the last years as an answer to face the challenges posed by the actual global megatrends (technological, demographic and environmental). The circular economy is conceived as a means to encourage more efficient use of resources and more sustainable consumption and production patterns by keeping the value of resources at its highest and minimizing the generation of waste.
Resuming previous works (Cecchi 2016, 2019 forthcoming), this paper explores the link between the circular economy and spatial freedom, addressing questions such as the role of the circular economy transition in the development of material infrastructure, access to basic services and spatial domination.

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