This is the conclusion of the input into the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment’s Waste Advisory Group consultation process on the circular economy by Feasta member Féidhlim Harty.

In the earlier meetings I was conscious of carrying a certain amount of frustration into the meetings, the result of many submissions to government departments in the past with no apparent impact on policy. However as the process continued I began to enjoy the process more and relax a little into it. Whether this was due to greater familiarity with the participants, a sense that things are actually changing a little at government level, or a release of any expectation as to the outcome I do not know. Certainly we can all select examples of situations whereby extensive and time-consuming input into policy consultation processes has yielded seemingly zero results. As society plummets headlong towards a perfect storm of ecological, ethical, sociological and climatological catastrophes, it can be difficult to retain equanimity while watching business-as-usual being discussed and planned around our ears.

Nonetheless it is my hope that despite my impatience for change, my fear for the future and grief for what has been lost to the world already, the contributions made as part of this process will lodge somewhere in the greater fabric of the new policies and help to nudge forward some of the changes that are so urgently needed.

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