Eco-Innovation in Europe: Circular Economy and Sustainable Development

Eco-Innovation in Europe: Circular Economy and Sustainable Development

Boris Dziura (EUBA Bratislava, Slovakia), Marta Vovk (EUBA Bratislava, Slovakia) and Leonid Raneta (EUBA Bratislava, Slovakia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-1196-1.ch001

Abstract

Eco-innovations according the European Commission determine the future of Europe and stand at the heart of the EU's policies. The focus of the Europe 2020 Strategy is on smart, sustainable, and inclusive growth. Eco-innovations are perceived as a critical for carrying out objectives of the Strategy. To deliver the objectives of the Strategy, Eco-Innovation Action Plan (EcoAP) was adopted by the European Commission in 2011, and now it represents not only a crucial part of the European policy framework for sustainable production and consumption, which supports a set of environmental initiatives but also serves a crucial factor to following the goals of the circular economy. At the same time, it is not clear empirically how eco-innovations are linked with the progress of the EU countries towards sustainable and circular economy.
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Literature Review

In the professional literature is possible to find different concepts regarding characteristics of an economic system: red, brown, green, blue and solar economics. The Red Economy concept was also used for the countries with domination of planned economy. The red economy is a set of authoritative rules that define and manage the economy. In the professional literature is also known as the extreme form bureaucracy, where the amount of regulations is overwhelming, prescribes and influences the entire economy, with appears as extremely inefficient (Burkett, 2009; Dickson, 2014).

Brown economy is a model whose economic growth is largely driven by extraction of hydrocarbon fuels and the processing of petrochemical products such as coal, oil and natural gas. This model is associated with large amount of pollution, large amounts of emissions of carbon dioxide and other harmful substances in the air and water that have a negative impact on the environment. Economic development in this case depends largely on the use of resources that are non-renewable, while environmental pollution in their production and the risk of unsustainable growth (Winpenny, 1996). As an example, Russian Federation and the structure of its exports in 2018, where the export of mineral of raw materials and metals represented more than 70% of total country exports (EIA, 2016).

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