CECIMO’s Contribution to the European Commission Public Consultation on the Sustainable Product Initiative
The transition towards sustainable and circular manufacturing brings a considerable change in most industries. It demands a gradual shift towards new practices and technologies that minimise their environmental impacts and preserve energy and natural resources. The concept of circular economy is "based on the principles of designing out waste and pollution, keeping products and materials in use, and regenerating natural systems" (Ellen MacArthur Foundation). This concept includes other practices such as recyclability, repairability, durability and reusability, which allow products to be more sustainable without a loss of quality, safety, or strength.
Creating a business model that encompasses these "practices" and ensures economic gains to the manufacturer still poses a number of challenges. Even if there are different existing successful business models, they remain sector-specific (for example, textile or construction sector), and they are difficult to apply in other sectors.
Key enabling technologies for the product sustainability
The use of key enabling technologies can help the manufacturing industries respond to environmental, societal and economic challenges and develop new sustainable products.
Machine tools are key enabling technologies that directly impact the productivity and the competitiveness of almost every manufacturing process. They are used to manufacture different objects such as home appliances, bicycles, cars, planes, medical devices and wind turbines. Therefore, this technology has a big role in the transition towards more circular and sustainable manufacturing....