The Usage of Circular Economy Strategies to Mitigate the Impacts of Climate Change in Northern Europe

  • Janis ZvirgzdinsEmail author
  • Kaspars Plotka
  • Ineta Geipele
Part of the Climate Change Management book series (CCM)


Climate change has been addressed from climatic, economic and social aspects in Northern Europe as well as worldwide, and evaluation of measures that might prevent consequences of climate change on global economic processes is required. Therefore, the paper evaluates circular economy as a successful strategy to mitigate climate change. Literature review and desk research were used to estimate climate change impact on the economy of Northern European countries and their social processes with special focus on passenger vehicles. The results confirmed relations between human behaviour and global warming, which is a threat for the entire humanity. In addition, the study reveals that circular economy car sharing strategy applied to the European Union countries (excluding Bulgaria, Cyprus, and Malta) has a potential to cut emissions by 358.6 MtCO2 eq. and save 7.64 billion EUR annually. The authors suggest promoting the transition to shared, instead of owned vehicle ownership model. Therefore, the study shows that circular economy consists of features that may mitigate some negative consequences of climate change and, in addition, demonstrates potential to provide a basis for sustainable development.


Circular economy Climate change Economics Global warming Mitigation Sharing economy 


  1. Alston GL, Battise DM, Neville MW (2016) A 10-year study of the academic progress of students identified as low performers after their first semester of pharmacy school. Am J Pharm Educ 80(7):118Google Scholar
  2. Barbier E (2011) The policy challenges for green economy and sustainable economic development. Nat Resour Forum 35(3):233–245. Scholar
  3. Bergsma G, Bijleveld M, Nusselder S (2016) The circular economy as a key instrument for reducing climate change. CE Delft. Retrieved from:
  4. Blok K, Hoogzaad J, Ramkumar S, Ridley A, Srivastav P, Tan I, Terlouw W, de Wit M (2016). Implementing circular economy globally makes paris targets achievable. Circle Economy, Ecofys. Retrieved from:
  5. Burke M, Hsiang SM, Miguel E (2015) Climate and conflict. Ann Rev Econ 7(1):577–617. Scholar
  6. Climate-KIC (2018) Digitalisation—unlocking the potential of the circular economy. European Institute of Innovation and Technology. Retrieved from:
  7. Deloitte Sustainability (2016) Circular economy potential for climate change mitigation. Deloitte Conseil: Member of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited. Retrieved from:
  8. Dépoues V, Bordier C (2015) Mitigating climate change and waste recycling: household packaging case study. CDC climate research. Retrieved from:
  9. Enkvist PA, Klevnas P (2018) The circular economy–a powerful force for climate mitigation: transformative innovation for prosperous and low-carbon industry. Material Economics Sverige AB, Stockholm, SwedenGoogle Scholar
  10. European Automobile Manufacturers Association (2018) ACEA report vehicles in use Europe 2018. ACEA. Retrieved from:
  11. European Commission (2014) Commission staff working document: executive summary of the impact assessment. Retrieved from:
  12. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (2015) Global initiative on food loss and waste reduction. Retrieved from:
  13. Geipele I, Plotka K, Wirzhbitskis Y, Zvirgzdins J (2018) The synergy in circular economy. In: Third international conference on economic and business management (FEBM 2018), Atlantis Press, pp 65–68.
  14. Gohd C (2017) Stephen Hawking: humans must leave earth within 600 years. Retrieved from:
  15. Janssens C (2017) What role can circular economy play in delivering the Paris Agreement? Institute for European Environmental Policy. Retrieved from:
  16. Kharas H (2017) The unprecedented expansion of the global middle class. Retrieved from:
  17. Leal Filho W (2018) Bioeconomy meets the circular economy: the RESYNTEX and FORCE projects. In: Towards a sustainable bioeconomy: principles, challenges and perspectives. Springer, Cham, pp 567–575.
  18. MacArthur E, Zumwinkel K, Stuchtey MR (2015) Growth within: a circular economy vision for a competitive Europe. Ellen MacArthur Foundation. Retrieved from:
  19. Moore J, Kissinger M, Rees WE (2013) An urban metabolism and ecological footprint assessment of metro Vancouver. J Environ Manage 124:51–61. Scholar
  20. NASA Earth Observatory (2010) Is current warming natural? Retrieved from:
  21. Nemry F, Leduc G, Mongelli I, Uihlein A (2008) Environmental improvement of passenger cars. European Commission. Retrieved from:
  22. Passenger Car Sales in Europe (2019) Retrieved from:
  23. Patomäki H (2001) Democratising globalisation: the leverage of the tobin tax. Zed Books, LondonGoogle Scholar
  24. Purchasing Power Adjusted GDP Per Capita (2019) Eurostat. Retrieved from:
  25. Schroeder P, Anggraeni K, Weber U (2018) The relevance of circular economy practices to the sustainable development goals. J Ind Ecol 23(1):77–95. Scholar
  26. Scott M, Lindsey R (2016) Which emits more carbon dioxide: volcanoes or human activities? Retrieved from:
  27. Union of Concerned Scientists (2019) Global warming impacts: the consequences of climate change are already here. Retrieved from
  28. United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (2019) Paris Agreement—status of ratification. Retrieved from:
  29. United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (2019) What is the Paris Agreement? Retrieved from:
  30. Wijkman A, Skånberg K (2015) The circular economy and benefits for society. Club of Rome, ZurichGoogle Scholar
  31. Worldometers (2017) Current world population. Retrieved from:
  32. Zvirgzdins J, Plotka K, Geipele S (2018) Eco-economics in cities and rural areas. Baltic J Real Estate Econ Constr Manag 6(1):88–99. Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Janis Zvirgzdins
    • 1
    Email author
  • Kaspars Plotka
    • 1
  • Ineta Geipele
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of the Civil Engineering and Real Estate Economics, Riga Technical UniversityRigaLatvia

Personalised recommendations