Circular Economy

A circular economy represents a significant shift from traditional linear economic models, focusing on reducing waste and promoting the reuse of resources. Circularity is central to our mission, reflecting our commitment to a sustainable future.

Circular Economy

A circular economy represents a significant shift from traditional linear economic models, focusing on reducing waste and promoting the reuse of resources. This key concept advocates for a sustainable cycle where materials are continuously repurposed.

At Aggregate Industries, circularity is at the core of everything we do, helping to create a more sustainable future with materials that are responsibly sourced, energy efficient and environmentally friendly. No less than you’d expect from a member of the Holcim Group – the global leader in innovative and sustainable construction solutions.

Read on to find out more about the circular economy, its increasing importance and the ambitious plans we have for the future as we take the next steps in our net-zero journey.


Let’s answer this by first stating what it is not, and that’s the linear economy, which is characterised by a one-directional flow of materials. Meaning resources are extracted, transformed into products, used and then discarded as waste. In this example, we’re showing the linear asphalt economy.

The circular economy, on the other hand, focuses on minimising waste and maximising resource use by keeping products and materials in circulation through repair, refurbishment, remanufacturing and recycling.

This model aims to eliminate waste, circulate resources and reduce our demand on natural resources, addressing environmental challenges while offering economic and social benefits. It requires a systemic shift in business operations and consumer behaviour, with an emphasis on collaboration.

In short, it involves transitioning from a linear ‘take-make-waste’ model to a circular ‘reduce-reuse-recycle’ economy.


The transition to a circular economy is key for sustainable development, offering environmental, economic and social benefits.

Environmentally, a circular economy reduces waste and resource depletion, helping to combat climate change. By focusing on reducing, reusing and recycling materials, it minimises the amount of waste that ends up in landfills and incinerators. This reduction lowers greenhouse gas emissions and decreases pollution, leading to cleaner air and water. It also promotes sustainable resource management, ensuring ecosystems stay healthy and biodiversity is preserved.

Economically, a circular economy boosts resilience and efficiency by reducing reliance on finite resources. Designing products for longer life and promoting material reuse lowers costs for raw materials and waste disposal. This approach drives innovation, as companies develop new methods and technologies for sustainable production. It also leads to cost savings through better resource and energy use, optimising supply chains, and reducing waste. This makes businesses more productive and profitable.

Socially, a circular economy promotes healthier communities and fair resource distribution. By reducing pollution and encouraging the use of non-toxic, biodegradable materials, it creates safer and healthier living environments. Effective waste management and green spaces improve public health and well-being. The circular economy also fosters social equity by creating jobs and supporting local economies. By promoting efficient resource use and reducing environmental impacts, the circular economy supports fairer and more sustainable resource distribution, benefiting everyone.

Find out about the circular economy for Asphalt

Aggregate Industries and the Circular Economy

Here in the UK, the population is rising and the requirement for new infrastructure is increasing, as is the need for housing, hospitals, schools and recreational spaces. We have a pivotal role to play in meeting society’s requirements, while minimising the demand on the world’s natural resources.

This is why we are adopting a circular economy approach across everything we do. The circular economy transition is more than minimising waste. It is about the whole value chain and our focus drives the efficient use of natural resources throughout their life cycle.

We are committed to improving resource efficiency through the reuse, recovery or recycling of waste materials in our production processes. Plus, we aim to minimise the generation of both hazardous and non-hazardous waste.

Our Specific Goals for 2025

In committing to a circular economy, we’ve set ourselves some important milestones, goals that we expect to achieve by 2025:

  • Increase the volume of materials reclaimed or recycled from 1.2 million tonnes to 3 million tonnes by 2025.
  • Reduce our waste to landfill to zero.
  • Embed a circularity collaboration action network to generate best practice across our product lines.

Focus Beyond 2025

We recognise that our plans for a circular economy will evolve, especially as technological solutions become clearer. But beyond 2025, there are two key ways in which we aim to maximise opportunities to make our business more sustainable:

  • Significantly increase the volume of material reclaimed or recycled and have a material roadmap and a material sourcing strategy in place.
  • Have a strategy in place to maximise the use of waste material that will have otherwise gone to landfill.

Our Commitment in Action

Turning old roads into new

Recycling is a key focus for us, and we have made significant progress in using recycled materials, particularly construction and demolition waste. Our Surfacing Solutions division actively identifies and recycles asphalt pavement, providing more sustainable solutions and supporting a circular economy. In 2021, we recycled nearly 830,000 tonnes of RAP from worn-out roads, enough to resurface the pitch at Wembley Stadium almost 7,000 times.

Ceramics into cement

We have partnered with Johnson Tiles to recycle 20,000 tonnes of waste ceramics annually from their Stoke factory into cement at our Cauldon plant. The waste tiles are crushed, mixed with limestone and other raw materials, and processed in the kiln. This initiative reduces the need for virgin materials like shale, minimising ground extraction and conserving natural resources. This four-year agreement highlights our commitment to sustainable practices in the construction industry.

An investment in Urban Mining in the Capital

In April 2023, we acquired Sivyer Logistics, enhancing our CDM expertise and providing six facilities in London. These facilities handle 1 million tonnes of construction and demolition waste annually, recovering over 450,000 tonnes through advanced recycling processes. This acquisition positions us at the forefront of circular construction, supporting our ambition to build new from the old and become the UK’s leading supplier of sustainable construction materials and solutions.

Our Products Promoting Circularity

We are committed to leading the construction industry towards a more sustainable future. And the most innovative products within our range are designed to contribute positively to the environment by embracing the three main principles of a circular economy: reduce, recycle, and reuse.


Our materials are engineered to minimise the use of natural resources and reduce waste in construction projects. By developing products that require less material without compromising quality, we help decrease the overall environmental impact across the construction sector.

ECOPact Concrete
ECOPact logo

We offer our low carbon concrete ECOPact with Concrete Demolition Materials (CDM). By combining CDM with ECOPact, we not only mitigate carbon emissions but also promote a holistic, circular economy within the construction industry, ultimately advancing us closer to our net-zero emissions goals while fostering sustainability and resilience in the built environment.

ECOPlanet Green Cement
ECOPlanet Logo

ECOPlanet is the latest product in our range  of green building solutions, offering at least 30% carbon reduction beyond that of standard CEM I cement. We are reducing the CEMI content with ECOPlanet by substituting it with PFA (a waste from coal fuel power stations). This has the added benefit of lowering the embodied carbon emissions.

Dynamax logo

This high-performance concrete exemplifies our commitment to resource efficiency in construction. Engineered for exceptional strength and durability, it allows for the construction of more robust structures with less material. This not only lowers the concrete and steel requirements but also reduces transportation needs and associated carbon emissions. Its high early strength development further reduces construction timelines, making it a sustainable choice for building projects.


Our commitment goes beyond reducing harm; we aim to have a restorative impact on the environment. Through innovative techniques and practices, such as the use of sustainable materials and supporting biodiversity in our quarries, we strive to regenerate and enhance the natural ecosystems where we operate.



This fast-draining concrete significantly enhances stormwater management by rapidly directing water away from urban surfaces, minimising surface water runoff and urban flooding and supporting sustainable urban drainage systems, thus reducing environmental impacts. By effectively managing stormwater, Hydromedia also helps to restore natural water cycles.

SuperFlow SuDSAgg

SuperFlow SuDSAgg

SuperFlow SuDSAgg is a high-performance sub-base aggregate designed to enhance Sustainable Drainage Systems, supporting environmental sustainability by helping to manage water flow, prevent flooding and reduce water pollution. Its expertly crafted angular shape and natural durability ensure effective compaction, optimal void retention and long-term performance, making it ideal for projects that prioritise ecological impact and water management efficiency.


We believe in giving new life to used materials. Many of our products are made from recycled content, reducing the demand for virgin materials. Our recycling initiatives also extend to developing methods for our customers to recycle construction waste, turning potential landfill into valuable resources.

Foamix logo

Containing up to 92% recycled materials, including up to 85% reclaimed asphalt pavement, Foamix promotes a circular economy approach to road construction by reducing the requirement for virgin aggregates. Foamix not only adheres to rigorous environmental standards but also reduces the carbon footprint during manufacturing processes. Further enhancing our sustainable efforts, Foamix Eco achieves carbon neutrality by integrating carbon-negative aggregates and biogenic binders.

Aggneo logo

Aggneo is a sustainable secondary aggregate, offering the same performance as virgin aggregates and promoting a circular economy by reusing materials that would otherwise go to waste. It comprises a minimum 20% non-primary content and is suitable for all construction projects, ensuring durability and reliability while contributing to a greener future.

Aggregate Industries and Holcim

Aggregate Industries is a valued subsidiary of Holcim Group, one of the leading global companies focused on sustainable building materials. Together, we share a commitment to sustainability and the principles of the circular economy, building progress for people and the planet.

Holcim provides support and resources that enable us to implement advanced sustainable practices in our production processes, with this synergy helping to  promote more environmentally friendly and innovative construction solutions on a global scale.

Holcim’s Activities in Advancing Circularity

The following are Holcim initiatives which, by driving circular construction, unlock economic growth in a way that is climate-friendly, nature-positive and socially-inclusive - combining local actions, global campaigns and collaborative partnerships to create a more sustainable and resilient built environment.


Holcim’s vision is to build new from the old, decoupling economic growth from resource consumption. Supporting the transition to a circular economy, ECOCycle is our proprietary endorsement which is at the forefront of driving change in the construction industry. This label identifies our products and solutions contain more than 10% CDM, without any compromise on performance.

The Benefits of ECOCycle




Resource Efficiency

By recycling construction materials, ECOCycle helps conserve natural resources. It allows us to build new structures from existing ones, reducing the need for virginraw materials.

Reduced Environmental Impact

ECOCycle significantly reduces waste and CO2 emissions associated with traditional construction. It contributes to sustainable development by minimising the impact on the environment.

Circular Economy Transition

Holcim’s commitment to circular construction aligns with the principles of a circular economy. ECOCycle exemplifies how we can close the loop, turning waste into valuable resources.

Go Circular

This global campaign from Holcim advocates for circular building and living. In 2023, the GO CIRCULAR team participated in The Ocean Race, symbolising Holcim’s net-zero commitment. Their sights are now set on the Vendée Globe 2024 and The Ocean Race Europe 2025, where they’ll be aboard their 60 ft monohull IMOCA sailing boat.

As the team races around the globe, they collect water and air samples, from edges of the world where no-one goes, gathering data that is shared with the World Meteorological Organisation to advance climate science and global weather forecasting.

Circular Explorer

Holcim’s partnership with One Earth One Ocean led to the creation of the Circular Explorer, a 100% solar-powered recycling catamaran, designed to recover marine plastic waste in the world’s oceans and rivers.

To accelerate its impact, the Circular Explorer is building awareness through educational activities to empower next-generation changemakers in the local communities and pushing the boundaries of marine science to explore new solutions with leading marine institutes.


Collaborative Partnerships

Recognising that no single organisation can achieve circularity alone, Holcim engage with influential partners across the value chain, including:

Government Authorities

Advocating for enabling policies and specifying low-carbon solutions.


Redirecting capital flows toward circular construction.

Real Estate Developers

Prioritising low-carbon and circular solutions in procurement.

Architects and Designers

Incorporating sustainability certifications into design.

Circular Cities Hub

Recognising that 70% of the world’s population will live in cities by 2050, Holcim collaborates with Bloomberg to develop the Circular Cities Hub. This dynamic platform accelerates the shift toward circular living and building practices, promoting sustainability at the urban level.

European Decarbonisation Roadmap

Holcim’s European decarbonisation roadmap aims to make circularity a driver of profitable growth. By increasing its ECOCycle technology platform to 150 sites in Europe by 2030, Holcim plans to recycle 20m tons of construction demolition materials annually.


Neustark, a startup supported by Holcim, has developed a groundbreaking mineralisation technology that significantly accelerates the natural carbonation process of concrete. By capturing and storing CO2 in recycled concrete, this technology not only prevents carbon emissions but also ensures permanent storage, even if the material is reused. This innovative approach supports Holcim's circular construction initiatives and is pivotal in achieving negative emissions to meet climate goals.