The Circular Economy Forum of the Americas (CEFA) – an initiative organized by the Circular Economy Platform of the Americas (CEP-Americas), promoted by the Americas Sustainable Development Foundation (ASDF) – is a meeting point of people, companies and institutions that work and collaborate to make the transition to a circular economy (CE) on the American continent possible .
CEFA’s second edition took place on 27-28 November 2018 at the inspiring “Botanico” Conference Centre located at the foot of the Andes in Santiago, Chile. Various topics addressed answering the question: How to make Circular Economy and Sustainability in the Americas a reality? Success stories related to the energy sector, mining, material handling, construction, agriculture, and fishing, among others were presented.
Around 300 participants from 20 countries, including industry leaders, entrepreneurs, universities, NGOs and governments who are involved in Circular Economy (CE) initiatives, met to discuss the state of the needs, challenges and opportunities of this emerging and rapidly expanding field of work.
During CEFA, ECOR was acknowledged as a CE frontrunner and an enabler for others to achieve their circular objectives. Paola Rojas, CE business developer for Mexico and Latin America, participated in the discussion panels and presented the ECOR path and evolution from a company created under the CE principles into a successful solution to increase material value.
On the American Continent, ECOR is represented in Mexico and in the US, where the opportunities are enormous and challenging at the same time. When trying to apply or replicate ECOR’s success in other markets, Paola explained the importance of understanding the market of the country and make adequations if needed, while keeping the concept and core objective of the company intact. The Americas have a big potential in terms of natural resources, but its contribution to pollution and poverty is also high. More than ever it is important to adopt alternatives that integrate social, ecological and economic value, and ECOR is an inspiring model for this transition.
To close the event, “The Santiago Declaration” was signed as a call made by civil society, businesses, governments and universities to state that there is a growing community of experts and stakeholders in the Americas committed to facilitating the transition towards a Circular Continent.
A closure cocktail was hosted by the Ambassador of the Netherlands in Chile, Harman Idema, at his Residence, to celebrate the steps achieved during CEFA and reinforce the message that for big challenges a common global effort is needed.