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Circular Packaging Business Proposal for Isagenix International

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This proposal lays out the business case for Isagenix International to adopt circular packaging that is compatible with the circular economy. I first give a brief background on plastic packaging and the environmental risks that go along with it. After

This proposal lays out the business case for Isagenix International to adopt circular packaging that is compatible with the circular economy. I first give a brief background on plastic packaging and the environmental risks that go along with it. After explaining how a linear economy is unsustainable, I introduce the concept of a circular economy. I then explain the competitive advantages that Isagenix can gain over its competitors from pursuing circular or sustainable packaging, and provide a benchmarking analysis of other companies’ sustainable packaging goals. After establishing the reasons that Isagenix should pursue this initiative, I go into an explanation of how Isagenix should design packaging for circularity and educate consumers on how to recycle their packaging products. Lastly, I propose my three recommendations for action that Isagenix should start with to begin transitioning all of their packaging to be circular.

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2019-05

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Different Roads to the Same Destination?

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Sustainable Materials Management and Circular Economy are both frameworks for considering the way we interact with the world's resources. Different organizations and institutions across the world have adopted one philosophy or the other. To some, there seems to be little

Sustainable Materials Management and Circular Economy are both frameworks for considering the way we interact with the world's resources. Different organizations and institutions across the world have adopted one philosophy or the other. To some, there seems to be little overlap of the two, and to others, they are perceived as being interchangeable. This paper evaluates Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) and Circular Economy (CE) individually and in comparison to see how truly different these frameworks are from one another. This comparison is then extended into a theoretical walk-through of an SMM treatment of concrete pavement in contrast with a CE treatment. With concrete being a ubiquitous in the world's buildings and roads, as well as being a major constituent of Construction & Demolition waste generated, its analysis is applicable to a significant portion of the world's material flow. The ultimate test of differentiation between SMM and CE would ask: 1) If SMM principles guided action, would the outcomes be aligned with or at odds with CE principles? and conversely 2) If CE principles guided action, would the outcomes be aligned with or at odds with SMM principles? Using concrete pavement as an example, this paper seeks to determine whether or not Sustainable Materials Management and Circular Economy are simply different roads leading to the same destination.

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2017-05

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Scalability Analysis of Recycling Markets for NdFeB Magnets in the United States

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Over the past decades, rare earth elements (REE) have become a crucial backbone to the functioning of modern technology infrastructure, particularly due to their inclusion within NdFeB magnets which power technologies such as hard disk drives and wind turbines. However,

Over the past decades, rare earth elements (REE) have become a crucial backbone to the functioning of modern technology infrastructure, particularly due to their inclusion within NdFeB magnets which power technologies such as hard disk drives and wind turbines. However, mining and extraction of REEs pose significant environmental and human health risks, thus signaling a need for more sustainable methods of sourcing. This research aims to compare the impact and effectiveness of three recycling processes for decommissioned NdFeB magnets sourced from end-of-life wind turbines, as well as consider strategies for developing these processes on an industrial scale. A material flow analysis (MFA) has been conducted to determine comparable input and output factors for two types of laboratory-scale recycling methods, molten salt electrolysis and hydrometallurgy, and one industrial-scale method, magnet-to-magnet. Following this, an impact analysis of potential industrial level magnet recycling operations for molten salt electrolysis and hydrometallurgy was conducted. The results show that molten salt electrolysis had the highest levels of impact for global warming, ozone depletion, and energy usage of the three methods when scaled on an industrial level. Hydrometallurgy had relatively low energy usage and emissions impacts but required large amounts of water and produced high levels of wastewater. The magnet-to-magnet process showed promising impact results in comparison with the alternate two methods, but further development needs to be done to circumvent the continued use of virgin REE in the final production steps for novel magnets. Overall, it is recommended that locations of recycling operations should be pursued for each process relative to energy and water usage needs, as well as transportation distance from wind farms.

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2020-12