The circular economy has been acknowledged as an effective strategy to achieve climate objectives by 11 countries in the Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) region in their NDCs. Of these countries, 6 (Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Peru, Dominican Republic, and Uruguay) have a national circular economy strategy or policy. However, these countries do not yet have a standard methodology for estimating the impact of circular economy policies and actions on mitigation or adaptation objectives. In discussions with member countries of the LAC Circular Economy Coalition, a knowledge gap among local and national decision-makers in terms of monitoring and evaluation (M&E) systems in the circularity sector has been noted. The countries have also lamented the lack of knowledge exchange initiatives that would enable best practices to be shared among countries facing similar challenges. It is important to design an M&E system that captures best practices and collects and shares baselines that can feed into national, sub-national, and international reporting on climate change and sustainable development. M&E systems are also important in determining whether or not implemented measures are on track and how they can be improved.
The objective of this multi-country assistance is to propose guidelines for establishing systems by which to measure and evaluate the impact of circular economy actions on national climate objectives. Recommendations will be compiled so that each country, based on its own priorities, strategies and actions, as well as the status of its information and reporting systems, can build and/or improve its M&E system of the portfolio of circular initiatives. The assistance will contribute common concepts, a generic matrix of indicators, and good practices for data collection, indicator estimation, updating and analysis.
The expected impact of the assistance will be to provide each participating country with technical guidelines with which to consolidate an M&E system for measures aimed at a circular economy, including their impact on climate change mitigation and adaptation. The M&E system established by each country will enable tracking, monitoring of effectiveness, and identification of possible improvements. This technical assistance will also include a gender perspective in identifying indicators of adaptation and resilience to climate change, and in the search for a gender balance in the working group and capacity building activities. In the longer term, effects of the circular economy as a response to climate change will become more visible. Lastly, the assistance will contribute to the circular economy-related objectives articulated in country NDCs.