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Knowledge Sessions 2017

Advancing the Circular Economy


Circular economy is becoming a widely-used term that provides an important platform beyond historical concepts of the 3Rs and waste reduction. It introduces resource efficiency that expands our collective thinking on how we produce and consume materials. Transitioning to a circular economy requires production and consumption shifts that can be furthered through policy development, market practices, and behavioural change.

RCO is pleased host and facilitate a new trio of Knowledge Sessions in 2017 that aim to educate and empower members, interested stakeholders and the public to better understand, support, and accelerate the transition from a linear model of take-make-dispose to a circular economy.

The series will inform participants on the theory of circular economy and how it is creating change around the globe. It will offer businesses, policymakers, and organizations innovative examples that outline ideas and opportunities how to leverage this emerging economic model. 

All Knowledge Sessions are full-day forums (lunch included) and at the Beanfield Centre in Toronto.


 Thursday, Oct. 12, 2017

Procurement: Advancing the Circular Economy Through Buying Power 

Beyond Policy and Into Practice

The circular economy is a concept that aims to keep products and materials at their highest value at all times and eliminate waste; go beyond simply recycling – from production to end-of-life and along the entire supply chain – by improving product design and business models; and introduce and promote ideas of what we buy and how we use it. For example, buying access instead of ownership. What is central to advancing these concepts, and plays a direct and significant role in shaping their demand and supply, is procurement.

That’s why Recycling Council of Ontario is hosting a one-day forum to help stakeholders better understand, support, and accelerate the transition from a linear model of consumption of take-make-dispose to a model that achieves greater circularity. We want to demonstrate how organizations can leverage circular economy concepts into supply chains and procurement practices that maximize resource use, and reduce waste and greenhouse gas emissions.

Our objective is to showcase how environmental requirements should be central to purchasing decisions that positively effect service and cost. It has been established that commercial relationships provide direct and sustainable methods to shift markets to require product designers and service providers to innovate and meet environmental requirements. New opportunities are also being presented that create environmentally and economically sustainable business relationships: buying light instead of lamps; leasing floor cover instead of buying carpet; ride sharing instead of car buying. These market responses yield economic, social, and environmental gains while influencing how we buy and consume goods and services.

Recycling Council of Ontario is committed to Ontario’s transition to a circular economy, and is pleased to host a one-day forum that spotlights supply chain efficiency, procurement, and buying power as pivotal instruments to achieving it.

Confirmed Speakers

Mathy Stanislaus

In September 2016 the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a report for a G7 Alliance – Advancing Resource Efficiency and the Supply Chain (PDF) – that highlights abilities for private and public organizations to stimulate the development of products and services that are more resource efficient over their lifecycles. 

Joining us to elaborate on this report is Mathy Stanislaus, Senior Advisor, Accelerating Circular Economy Policy, World Economic Forum; and former Assistant Administrator in EPA's Office of Land and Emergency Management (OLEM).

Mr. Stanislaus will discuss how we can take immediate action to support greater circularity in Ontario’s production and consumption behaviours.  Mr. Stanislaus began work as Assistant Administrator for EPA's Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response (OSWER) after being confirmed by the U.S. Senate on June 8, 2009, and responsibilities included leading EPA programs on hazardous and solid waste management, and hazardous waste cleanup. Mr. Stanislaus has also been an advisor to other federal government agencies, Congress, and the United Nations on a variety of environmental issues.

Dr. Mervyn Jones

Dr. Mervyn Jones is an independent sustainable procurement specialist who has provided technical support on the development and implementation of the 10YFP: Sustainable Public Procurement Programme a global framework of action to enhance international cooperation to accelerate the shift towards sustainable consumption and production (SCP) in developed and developing countries.  

He has also contributed to the EU LIFE REBus, a pioneering and testing a methodology that enables companies to transform their strategies to profitable, resilient, and more resource efficient business models (REBMs); and European Clothing Action Plan, which helps public procurers reach their environmental goals by using their buying power to stimulate a circular approach to workwear, and focuses on the clothing supply chain specifically to reduce waste and bring about effective waste recovery.

He previously worked for WRAP, where he led the Construction Waste Prevention programme, Sustainable Procurement, Manufacturing, and Products & Materials Programmes; and has a proven and independently audited track record in initiating and delivering projects that have demonstrated the business case for adopting and embedding more sustainable procurement policies and criteria into tenders and contracts.      


We will also showcase challenges and successes of the circular economy applied in various contexts:

  • Public sector through request for proposals, and identification of preferred vendors
  • Private sector - as buyers and users of goods and services - through purchasing power
  • Suppliers and service providers that shift business models to drive and respond to circular economy requirements
  • Small to medium-size enterprises that are innovating to stand out in a crowded marketplace

RCO events are well attended by individuals and organizations with vested interest in the burgeoning circular economy: producers, manufacturers, processors, governments, policymakers, associations, and environmental non-government organizations. 

RCO Member Rate: $300

Non-Member Rate (early bird to Sept. 26): $375
Non-Member Rate (Sept. 27 - Oct. 11): $425

Thursday, June 8, 2017
Accelerating Circular Economic Behaviour and Waste Reduction in the IC&I Sector

Event Recap

Thursday, March 2, 2017
Implementing the Waste-Free Ontario Act
Supporting the Introduction of Resource Productivity and Recovery Authority

Event Recap 


Knowledge Sessions sponsorship is a prime opportunity for organizations to showcase your commitment to advancing Ontario’s circular economy with a diverse and rotating set of influential industry and government stakeholders. By partnering with an environmental non-governmental organization that offers collaborative opportunities organizations demonstrate a keen understanding and commitment to sharing best practices and waste reduction solutions. Contact us for more.





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