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(en) France, Alternative Libertaire AL #261 - Production: The more green washing circular economy (fr, it, pt) [machine translation]

Date Fri, 17 Jun 2016 18:45:27 +0300

Under virtuous outside and full of good intentions, the circular economy is a project of reorganization of the production system, both to deal with the depletion of raw materials ... that to maintain the profits of the capitalists. A fine example of greenwashing. ---- In the circular economy, it is to go beyond the simple recycling of materials or energy savings in the production of goods. The idea is to consider the subject in his entire life, and consider upstream production while the extraction-production-cycle recycling. Thus, disassembly for easy recycling will be considered from the assembly. Consider an old complex object, a washing machine with its metal base and its "brain" e: the two are separated, ejected and replaced worn parts for a restart. Each individual who tinkers did that, but when it comes to complex objects, these are the industries that replace DIY.

Confession of planned obsolescence

From the perspective of industry, it will require that DIY is simple enough to repair, recycle, transform, and complicated enough for the amateur can not do it, just to make himself indispensable. Once unavoidable, industrial wear another concept: loyalty. The "eco-citizen consumer" will no longer buy the property but lease it from a company, which will service parts and labor. Not to mention the contentious customer-supplier in case of breakage of equipment, underline immediately the direct benefit to the industry, which is to minimize production costs, but without warranty or lower the final cost to the consumer. Furthermore, in terms of ecological perspectives, for now " the objective of a positive energy balance " is more like predictions of around 50% recovery in the best case. In addition, recycling will not stop as long exploitation of raw materials, because all too complex products must be made with top quality materials, so first hand. Finally, as they are producing for companies to be sustainable, the life span of products will be extended, which is an admission of planned obsolescence currently practiced.

New legislation and founding lies

This "new" economy is being prepared by legislative measures, which do not concern consumer goods, but also energy production and construction. For example, the Energy Transition Law for the August 2015 green growth creates an obligation to return in the career of construction rubble by 2017. That puts companies like Lafarge cement in very good economic provisions: finished the old days where you could recover a gravel truck to his court, everything will return to Central will be recalibrated, and Lafarge and others are already considering a labeling their products. Another aspect in which the state plays its role, recycling has a cost, and that recycled products are competitive relations to new products, it is necessary that the raw materials are taxed on their side.

Everything should be recycling producer job. A think tank optimistic as the Club of Rome table on the creation of 500 000 jobs in France [ 1 ] by 2030. This may seem a lot, because that figure ignores the jobs destroyed otherwise, as the effects of automation . One could therefore oppose this figure to another, older, from the scenario of an ecological and peasant agriculture that would create a million or more jobs. But there are concerns that the technology is more important than ecology to policy makers, as factory farms with biogas seem more fashionable than the peasant. These farms, from the brain of engineers, who focus all animal products at the same point to reuse waste, instead of less and produce. The same report of the Club of Rome said that output equals a circular economy would use 30% less material, but consumption from increasing, emissions increase. Then it will stop the locomotive? No, it will give him a little more endurance, longevity ... Either way it must not be mistaken, the circular economy will " allow to maximize all raw materials, products and waste to make the best "and will aim" to develop a competitive advantage "worldwide, as stated by the European Commission last December.

Marketing sequined

To adhere to this "social transformation" must sell, and green marketing is also mutating. After fifteen years of depoliticization, guilt and cardboard stars (Nicolas Hulot is not very credible to lecture in his plane), it is time to re-enchantment of capitalism. The new challenge is to convince consumers and persuade them to trust companies to ensure their "eco-citizenship". That's why actors reappropriate such voluntary simplicity, and other notions subverted in order to manipulate the masses. The document "Life Happy" edited by Ikea and ADEME (Agency for Environment and Energy Development) is full of manipulation methods of this type, combining psychology, mimicry activist circles, and claim from the base, to be horizontal. We can also judge their way to see a movement by the base: " The issue is [...] to talk to everyone not so much what it can do for sustainable development, but that development sustainability can do for him , "these people will face salespeople trained" to understand the incredible power that can have a brand, its decisive influence on behavior, including the creation of the social norm. .. "

We are already in this sequined marketing, and exalted hand, and persuasive sudden, some campaigns produced by the sponsors of major environmental events should not be underestimated. Companies are inspired. For example include the Lafarge clip that invokes the local centrality (replacing public actors) and the promotion of short circuits ... Suddenly trucks. These new media and economic campaigns reveal a significant shift in capitalist strategies, and it is well observed.

Dan Jeanré (AL Gard)

[ 1 ] See "The Circular Economy and Societal Benefits" study commissioned by the Club of Rome.
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