The Institute for Sustainability has secured planning permission to build the first cross-business cradle-to-cradle (C2C) demonstrator in the UK.
It will be based in Dagenham, East London, and will use by-products previously treated as waste from a group of adjacent industrial businesses to explore how C2C principles can be applied in a practical setting.
Working in partnership with the Greater London Authority (GLA) and University of London (UEL), the Institute will construct the demonstrator in the coming months on the London Sustainable Industries Park (London SIP).
The demonstrator will help businesses on the park to work together to understand how synergies between their production processes can result in creating additional value from their waste or by-products that would otherwise be downcycled, sent to landfill or discharged back into the environment.
Existing and prospective London SIP tenants include Closed Loop Recycling’s food grade plastic recycling plant as well as gasification plant from Cyclamax and a TEG Group anaerobic digestion plant.
The output of the demonstrator process, in this case aggregate material, could be used for a range of purposes including helping drainage on green roofs or on pathways in place of gravel.
Institute of Sustainability programme director Stella Okeahialam said: “In the UK alone, more than 434 million tonnes of waste are produced every year, driving a waste management industry worth more than £4.8 billion.
“As global demand for resources and the cost of transporting and disposing of unwanted materials increases, a number of approaches such as C2C and circular economy encourage a transformation in the way waste is considered and managed.
“The demonstrator provides a unique opportunity to show in practice how these approaches applied to industrial resources could not only reduce waste and help preserve finite resources, but can be commercially viable in the long term.”