In a piece for the Daily Maverick, John Ngoni Zvimba writes that the implementation of circular economy principles in the South African Water Sector is in line with the sustainable development goals of the United Nations, as well as the Paris Agreement on climate change. In contrast to the current conventional linear model, this concept is a development strategy enabling economic growth aiming to optmimise the chain of consumption of materials.
While there are some elements of circularity in South Africa, such as recycling and composting in the linear economy, a circular economy goes beyond the pursuit of waste prevention and reduction to inspire technological, organisational and social innovation across and within value chains.
The European Union, China, Japan, South Korea and and parts of the USA are regions that have made significant progress in the promotion of the circular economy. Through transitioning to the circular model, Europe predicts a doubling of economic benefits, 11% growth in average disposable incomes and halving of carbon dioxide emissions.