The circular industrial economy focuses first on the stocks of manufactured objects after the point of sale, which are controlled by the owner-users (called the era of ‘R’), and second on the stocks of manufactured materials, controlled by economic actors recovering resources (called the era of ‘D’), because the use value of a product is higher than the sum of the value of the materials it is made of.
A mature circular industrial economy will integrate the two domains – valuing objects and molecules – into one single loop, which also incorporates the linear industrial economy, necessary to supply innovative materials and components to upgrade the stocks. The use value of goods replaces the exchange value as the central economic value.
A nation-wide shift to a mature circular industrial economy would substantially reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and increase the number of jobs at national level. Such a shift can be triggered and accelerated by the application of known technical, commercial and policy innovations.