The Quebec approach

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The Quebec approach's key moments

As European and Asian countries gradually develop ambitious laws, policies, regulations, programs and targets to implement circular economy, North America is beginning to take ownership of this economic model. 

Having begun its transition to circular economy in 2014, Quebec serves as a pioneer on the continent.

2014 | Creation of the EDDEC Institute

At the interface between academia and society, the EDDEC Institute has quickly made circular economy one of its priorities. By 2014, around 50 researchers from the Montreal University, Montreal Polytechnic and HEC Montréal had laid the foundation for a multidisciplinary research program and a first scheme representing circular economy. Close ties were quickly forged with CIRODD and CTTÉI in order to broaden the number of people involved in research on the transition to the circular economy.

2015 | Creation of the centre for consultation on the circular economy

Under the impetus of the EDDEC Institute, some fifteen strategic players from industry, associations, the environment and government came together to create the conditions for a transition to a circular economy. Le Pôle québécois de concertation sur l'économie circulaire (Quebec Centre for consultation on the circular economyis, among other things, the basis of Quebec's "official" definition of circular economy.

2016 | Call for proposals and publication of a collective book

Launch of a first call for proposals from Recyc-Québec on the theme of circular economy called "Transition vers l’économie circulaire (Transition to circular economy)". Thirteen proposals, spread throughout Quebec, were selected and funded.

Publication of the collective book L’économie circulaire, une transition incontournable (Circular economy: an essential transition), an open-access book that consolidates the work of some fifty experts from Montreal University and its two affiliated schools, under the direction of the EDDEC Institute.

2017 | Creation of the interdepartmental group on circular economy (Groupe interministériel en économie circulaire - GIEC)

Made up of thirteen Quebec ministries, state-owned companies and led by ministère de l'Économie et de l'Innovation (MEI) and Recyc-Québec, GIEC's mandate is to make government circular economy actions and initiatives more efficient and integrated. It is working on the development of a "Quebec roadmap on the circular economy," which is expected to be unveiled in March 2020.

First MEI targeted consultation on the circular economy: organized as part of its action plan for growth and clean technologies 2018-2023, this event brought together around fifty stakeholders, making it possible to identify the obstacles and levers of the transition, as well as the measures to be preferred in the short term.

2018 | Wider diffusion of circular economy and publication of the first studies

Dissemination of the new circular economy scheme.

Publication of three studies by the EDDEC Institute (in Fench): Economic impact studyresearch report on metals and circular economy in QuebecMap of circular economy initiatives in Montreal.

First speech by the previous prime minister of Quebec, Philippe Couillard, on circular economy: held as part of an event organized by the CPEQ, this was to be the first public policy statement on the circular economy.

Convention on the circular economy: organized by Recyc-Québec, in collaboration with MESI and the EDDEC Institute, this event aims to bring together everyone involved in the transition to circular economy in Québec.

Launch of the Québec Circulaire platform!

2019 | Circular economy education

Online publication of the Circular Economy MOOC: An essential transition in July 2019

The organization of an international (multidisciplinary) city, territory and circular economy summer school, the first edition of which took place in June 2019

2020 | Resilience through the circular economy

Launch of the first call for initiatives by Québec Circulaire.

Unveiling of a $ 30M investment fund for the development of circular economy by Fondaction in collaboration with the City of Montreal.

Creation of the Center for Intersectoral Studies and Research on the Circular Economy (CERIEC) by the École de Technologie Supérieure (ÉTS).

2021 | First report exploring the implementation of a circular economy in Québec, in Canada, and first regional Circularity Gap

A new report Transitioning to a circular economy – Learning from the Québec experience 2014-2020 explores Québec's transition to a sustainable closed loop economy - and provides key lessons for others' journey to circularity.

The first regional Circularity Gap Report published Circle Ecomony, in partnership with RECYC-QUÉBEC, presents six scenarios to narrow Quebec's Circularity Gap

Publication of the report Turning Point: The Expert Panel on the Circular Economy in Canada by the Council of Canadian Academies.

Creation of the Quebec Circular Economy Research Network (RRECQ), a collaboration between HEC Montréal, ÉTS, Université Laval and Polytechnique Montréal, supported by the Center for Intersectoral Studies and Research on the Circular Economy (CERIEC) and funded by the Fonds de recherche du Québec.

2022 | Awareness and regulatory levers

October is named Circular Economy Month across Canada.

Launch of Circular Montreal: a space dedicated to Montreal's circular economy initiatives.

Several new regulatory levers: the Government of Canada publishes the Single-Use Plastics Prohibition Regulations, the Government of Quebec enacts the Regulation on Extended Producer Responsibility and two regulations specifying the terms of the modernized Deposit-Refund and Selective Collection Systems.

2023 | Transition of the Quebec metropolis and Canada-wide momentum

The first Canadian Circular Economy Summit is held in June in Toronto.

The City of Montréal, in collaboration with Circle Economy, publishes a Circle City Scan to help identify contextually appropriate opportunities to foster a circular economy and presents its draft of it's Roadmap for a circular economy.