Insights / Circularity
”In a few years, businesses who have not changed into circular business models will be starting to drop off”
On why every day is a good reason to celebrate #circularmonday
20 Nov 2023

Who are you?

— I’m Co-founder of #circularmonday and ClimateHero, says Davidsson. #circularmonday is a global campaign for circular consumption. In our database, over 1200 business, organisations, and influencers from over 30 countries have joined the campaign and are all working for circularity in different degrees. One might say that Circular Monday is the complete opposite, or even solution, to Black Friday’s overconsumption of newly produced stuff. Circular Monday makes it easy for a ’circulent’ to find products and services that do not harm our planet. It was founded in 2017 by Henning Gillberg, and co-founded by me. From 2023 it is the impact start up ClimateHero who’s organizing it globally. 

Yes, you’re also standing behind ClimateHero. Who are you?

— We’re a fast-growing impact startup with a mission to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. We strive to achieve our mission by helping individuals and companies to calculate their carbon footprints, commit to reduce their emissions, and contribute to global net zero emissions.

— We help our business clients with carbon reporting, environmental life cycle analysis, and engaging their employees and customers on the journey to net zero. We just launched a ClimateCart for e-commerce that are using Shopify as a way to compensate for the CO2 from a buy. But that is only the beginning!

— We are based in Stockholm, but we have global reach. We don’t expect to influence all of Earth’s inhabitants. Instead, we focus on the 10% who, through their consumption, drive 50% of global emissions, according to the World Inequality Report.

We hear more and more about the need to implement circular principles in the creative industries. Is this topic more relevant than ever?

— Yes, 100%. When we started working with it a few years back several haven’t even heard about it. Now with the clear scientific reports out there, it seems to be more relevant than ever. Even governments have a strategy for a circular economy. Another way I see it is that more and more businesses are communicating about it, more courses are popping up on how to do it — and the campaign #circularmonday is growing even faster than before!

You mentioned LCAs, which also gets a bigger and bigger attention. What are the reasons behind this buzz? 

— The demand for LCA is largely driven by the companies’ customers wanting to know what climate impact their purchases have. In part, it serves as a quality stamp or environmental label that the seller takes climate responsibility. In part, it is important data for the customer when they have to calculate their own footprint. It is also important for the customer to see which parts of the life cycle, for instance on materials, packaging, transport, and use, that have the greatest climate footprint for a specific product. And then, to focus on reducing these parts in particular.

What’s important to think about when it comes to LCAs? 

— To follow a standard like GHG Protocol Product Life Cycle Accounting and Reporting Standard, and that all emissions are taken into account, Davidsson shares. LCAs can be done with different forms of boundaries and different degrees of data quality. Just like for a company’s climate financial statements, you often have low data quality for certain parts of the calculations. It may also be the case that boundaries around the functional unit, the object of analysis, have been made in different ways. Looking at which companies you buy from and what they concretely do to reduce their climate impact for the products they offer is thus an important complement to looking at a specific LCA.

How do you predict the next few years for you and circularity?

— I think there will be more circulents out there and that in a few years, we’ve reached the point where businesses who have not changed into circular business models will be starting to drop off. They will not be relevant anymore. In this work, we will help businesses to transform and transition. Then I think the conversation has changed from ’this is good’ to ’this is absolutely necessary’ in widespread society — not just a small bunch.

Alexandra Davidsson. Photography: Daniel Söderberg

For you, what else do you have coming?

— Next year we enter phase 3 in ClimateHero, which will be interesting. We’ll grow even further, a Head of B2C and a Head of B2X (new markets) will join us. And there are many things we’re planning with #circularmonday — they’re just not official yet!

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