Industrial symbiosis provides a means to improve competitiveness and build resilient and sustainable economies. Put simply, industrial symbiosis helps businesses and organisations to operate in the same way as the natural eco-system where everything has a place and function, and nothing goes to waste. Whether working at company level, within a region or multiple regions or at national level we apply this systems based approach.
This unique cross sector engagement model we have developed also creates opportunities for deploying additional circular economy/industrial ecology tools such as eco-design and cleaner production.
In 2011, and based on experience of managing NISP and supporting the implementation of other industrial symbiosis projects around the world the Journal of Industrial Ecology approved our updated definition for the term:
Industrial symbiosis engages diverse organisations in a network to foster eco-innovation and long-term culture change. Creating and sharing knowledge through the network yields mutually profitable transactions for novel sourcing of required inputs and value-added destinations for non-product outputs, as well as improved business and technical processes.
Lombardi & Laybourn