Peterborough is initiating an ambitious line of work seeking to create a pioneering Circular City; embedding an innovative citywide circular economy approach. Helping Peterborough to efficiently manage the numerous flows of resources coming in and out of its geographical boundaries.
Peterborough believes that the Circular Economy concept, and its application at a city scale, is fundamental to creating a smart city. Referring to holistic concepts such as systems thinking, urban metabolism and biomimicry, we recognise that in order to function a city is not too dissimilar to any other living organism - it requires raw materials which it transforms for a specific use and produces waste as part of the process. Such a holistic understanding of CE strives to balance material and energy exchanges between nature and society and within society itself, working towards eco-effectiveness and long-term resilience.
Cities have numerous flows of resources crossing their geographical boundaries: equipment; materials; water; energy; heat; organic matter; and as many operating systems. Moreover, resources are not only about materials. Cities are made of people, and a whole new dimension of flows enter into consideration here: skills, transport, education, health, communities, recreational activities, etc.
In Peterborough, we want to provide the right environment for managing these flows efficiently in a circular way, a key aspect of our aspiration to create the UK's Environment Capital.
Such a vision is inherently collaborative and needs a bottom-up approach to be owned by each group of stakeholder within the City. This is also key to sustain the project in the longer term. We are seeking to collectively shape the enabling environment to transition towards this new circular model.
It requires engagement from key local stakeholders, the support of the national experts on CE and the development of a collective roadmap and action plan owned and tailored by the various groups of stakeholders.