Sustainable lifetimes – Week 3

After my absence last week I caught up with people who were in the session to get me up to date with what they did. This week we focused on The Circular Economy and how it differs from linear economy. Linear economy is when you take – make – waste, is fast consumption rates but its very unsustainable. Whereas circular economy is a closed loop and has slow consumption rates which is arguably more sustainable. Circular economy requires both biological (natural) and technical (synthetic) systems to work.

We then split up into groups to research different theories underpinning circular economy. Our group has blue economy which essentially was about utilising our oceans for energy and fishing more sustainably. It also talks about carbon footprint how it’s better to travel via seas than transport through air travel. Each research group then presented back to the main group about their findings. This gave me an insight into each theory that underpins circular economy.

Then moving forward we spoke about planned obsolescence which is when a product is designed to fail after a certain length of time. It’s pre planned, designed and engineered by the designer. We moved forward to talk about different categories of obsolescence, component failure, technical, economic, psychological obsolescence.

Component Failure – when a part of the product stops working.

Technical Obsolescence – When a the technology in a product fails or stops working.

Economic Obsolescence – cheaper to buy new products than get repaired. Capitalism hides costs.

Psychological Obsolescence – pressure when going into a shop to buy something brand new. Maybe having a new kitchen a need a kettle to match colour scheme.

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