COP28: Advancing the Circular Economy in Consumer Electronics

Juan Miguel Perez Rosas, CEO and Co-Founder of Finboot

The 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference, known as COP28, held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, brought together diplomats and leaders from around the world to advance initiatives in climate action. This year, I had the privilege of participating in this global event. Invited by our client SABIC, I attended a panel discussion on plastics circularity in the electronics industry, examining the challenges but specifically looking for solutions.

This gave me the opportunity to showcase the potential of Finboot’s digital traceability and supply chain data sharing solutions to contribute to the climate action effort. With the ability to bring transparency and reliability to complex and difficult to decarbonise supply chains, our solutions have emerged as a powerful tool helping capital intensive industries in their energy transition.

Advancing the Circular Economy in Consumer Electronics

The transition to a more circular economy is gaining momentum across industries. Perhaps with a special impact in the consumer electronics sector, given it plays a role in the convergence of multiple capital intensive industries like chemicals, metals, and semiconductors. Blockchain technology, with its ability to provide digital traceability, can play a crucial role in advancing the transition towards a circular economy. By overcoming challenges in data sharing and data quality across supply chains, we ensure access to reliable information about product provenance and composition, enabling the repurposing and reinsertion of critical raw materials.

Policy and Regulation: Driving Plastic Recycling in Consumer Electronics

Policy and regulation play a significant role in driving the transition towards circularity in the consumer electronics sector. However, voluntary schemes are proving to be more effective than formal regulations, as they can adapt and evolve faster to meet the changing needs of the industry. Collaboration between governments, corporates, and global multi-governmental organizations like the United Nations Framework convention on Climate Change (UNFCC) is crucial in creating global standards and accelerating the adoption of circular practices. But industry innovators have the opportunity and the responsibility to take the first steps in transforming their industrial processes for a lower carbon footprint and to promote circularity by design. SABIC is a great example of that, as a leading company in circular packaging solutions, SABIC is set an example by being among the first in their industry to obtain the ISCC+ certification, a voluntary scheme that audits the sourcing and manufacturing of recycled products to prevent greenwashing. More recently, in their work with Finboot, SABIC is once more taking the lead in transparency in their circular packaging solutions; by using blockchain technology and digital traceability to become the first in the industry to provide batch-level traceability for the circular packaging solutions.

Collaboration Across Sectors: Accelerating the Circular Economy

Collaboration across different sectors is essential for accelerating the transition towards circularity across industries including consumer electronics. The complex value chains involved in the production of consumer electronics require communication standards and collaboration to ensure the compatibility and interoperability of circular solutions with the existing industrial complex. Examples of successful collaboration can be seen in some of Finboot’s initiatives like tracing conflict minerals with Minexx [LINK to Minexx] and implementing advanced recycling solutions with CRDC Global [LINK TO CRDC]. By prioritizing circularity and low-carbon operations, industries can work together to create a more sustainable economic system.

Looking Towards the Future

While there is still much work to be done to achieve a global transition to circular and sustainable economic systems, there is hope in the actions of specific industry segments and innovators. The focus should now shift towards accelerating the transition. COP28 emphasized the importance of taking action, but the future lies in accelerating the adoption of circular practices and low-carbon operations. By embracing blockchain technology and fostering collaboration, we can create a more sustainable and circular future for the consumer electronics industry and beyond.

We need to accelerate towards a more circular and sustainable global economic system.


COP28 highlighted the significant role that blockchain technology can play in advancing the circular economy in the consumer electronics sector. By providing transparent and reliable energy tracking, enabling digital traceability, and fostering collaboration, blockchain can drive the transition towards a more sustainable and circular economic system. Policy and regulation, combined with industry innovation, are essential in accelerating this transition. With the right actions and a focus on accelerating the adoption of circular practices, we can create a brighter and more sustainable future for generations to come.