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Charting Policy Directions for Mining’s Sustainability with Circular Economy

by Raquel Balanay 1,2,* and Anthony Halog 1,*
School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, QLD 4072, Australia
College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Caraga State University, Butuan City 8600, Philippines
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Michele Rosano and Julie Hill
Recycling 2016, 1(2), 219-231;
Received: 26 April 2016 / Revised: 13 June 2016 / Accepted: 21 June 2016 / Published: 30 June 2016
This paper discusses circular economy (CE) as an option to mitigate the environmental impacts of mining operations, and a framework based on the three dimensions of sustainability, the possible uses of mining wastes, the life cycle, and the systems approaches to determine the policies that will induce initiatives towards designing out wastes for a mining-based circular economy. Previous research has been reviewed to determine CE configuration and the basis for the framework to guide in the development of CE-related mining policies. The Chinese model of circular economy, noted for the introduction of industrial symbiosis through eco-industrial parks at the meso level, and public participation at the macro level, forms the basic structure of the framework aimed at curbing mining waste, and closing the loop in mining. Holistic research is important in taking proactive CE technology actions, strategic measures, and policies, which can use life cycle assessment (LCA) methods (environmental and social LCA and life cycle costing) and systems dynamic modeling. With systems dynamic modeling, the framework introduced in this work can be expanded to cover as many important aspects as possible, and can check for areas of policy resistance that have been the reason for most policy failures. View Full-Text
Keywords: sustainability; circular economy; systems thinking; life cycle thinking; mining sustainability; circular economy; systems thinking; life cycle thinking; mining
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Balanay, R.; Halog, A. Charting Policy Directions for Mining’s Sustainability with Circular Economy. Recycling 2016, 1, 219-231.

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