So I’m Jos. I’m working on research in Circular Economy and the automotive sector, and I would like to know your point of view. If you accept, I’m going to record our conversation, transcribe it and put the transcription with a pseudonym, not with your real name in a repository of text documents that will be used for the research. If we do this and you change your mind later and no longer want to participate, get in touch with us and we will immediately remove your interview from the repository. I’m leaving you an information sheet with contact information. If you agree, please tell me your name and that you agree.
My name is Sharona Schneider and I agree. And I agree. Yeah.
Thank you. Okay.
My name is Anna Leonie. And I agree. Yeah.
Thank you. So the first question, can you define a circular economy in your own words?
Um, a circular economy is a closed loop system where it starts from one end and ends at the same place that it began. Yeah.
I mean, my definition would be pretty similar along the same lines, but it’s definitely where there is minimum kind of waste in all different kind of aspects and just that the loop closes, that it’s also sustainable in every way in long term.
Do you participate in a circular economy yourself in any aspect of your life?
Oftentimes when I buy clothing and second hand, so in a sense it is circular, whereas instead of going to a landfill and not being reused, it’s ending up back into the industry. And me as a consumer, I’m purchasing the same item over again. I think it’s really tough to do in our society currently as an individual because corporations at the end of the day have to ensure that their products are having a second life and not just being polluted in our environment.
I mean, it’s hard to say, especially nowadays with all the greenwashing that takes place. But I think, as Sharrona said, like especially being young, one of the ways you can do it is through clothes and especially vintage thrifting. And this kind of shopping and consumption is becoming more and more popular. So I do participate in that as well by, of course, donating clothes, hand-me-downs. Also close ups can be good at time and then of course, shopping thrifted, but also just limiting consumerism where possible. And otherwise, I mean. In a sense also at home, which is maybe not quite circular, but kind of growing on plants and stuff and straying away from the kind of fast consumerism where possible is, you know, doing the best where you can.
Uh, Sharona, how did you become interested in the circular economy, ideas and practices?
Um, I think it was around the idea of regeneration, wanting to make sure that the resources we’re taking from the planet also go back to where they came from. Because at the end of the day, I think it’s important to recognize that we are living off of this planet and the resources we have aren’t infinite. They’re very finite. So so the circular economy is the only way to ensure that things continue to be available for future generations.
I mean, the subject was officially and more in depth introduced to me during the first semester of my studies where I had a sustainability class. And it definitely kind of evoked interest to see how you can adapt this kind of theory into real consumerism and real life, where it’s often easier said than done. Yeah. And that interest has kind of persevered until now.
In your opinion, can a circular economy be implemented in individual sectors or industries?
Definitely. I think the challenge is convincing the people in charge that it’s important and it’s necessary, and it’s also something that’s economically beneficial because I think in the short term it might be more expensive, but in the long term it saves not only money and resources, but it protects the things that we value the most.
So yeah, I definitely think it could be. But it’s also important that if it is that it’s implemented and implemented ethically and in the right way, and also that there’s just the demand for it that kind of will support this and this kind of transition, which on a mass scale will of course take time to happen, but would be very beneficial in the long term.
Do you think the circular economy already exists in the car industry?
No, I don’t think so. But there’s a lot of potential. I think that now with our society prioritizing sustainability and the environment more, we’ll see a lot of it happen. But I don’t think there’s a lot, at least not from what I’ve seen.