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And it has only just begun… !

And it has only just begun… !
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This is the best way to describe the present situation of the Blue Economy.

Fife years after successfully starting the campaign, we can see a continuous dissemination of the concepts and principles of the Blue Economy. Who could have imagined that publishing a business case per week would have such an effect. Many have heard Blue Economy keynotes, and besides the numerous workshops that were held quite a few people have begun to reflect on their actions within the present economic system and gathered their courage to break new ground within entrepreneurship.

This is often compared to David and Goliath, to the struggle of the small versus the big. My opinion is that this reflects the courage of every single entrepreneur, to see his or her own business model as a whole, including all of its consequences from the value-added chain and the product’s life cycle – not merely the so-called “sustainable” core business between purchase and sale. If designed correctly, then a profitable business emerges, with multiple cash flows that can still be orientated without any compromise to nature. The good feeling of living a futurable way of life as well as the balance between economy, ecology and social responsibility make the concept so compelling, as well as competitive.

An openness towards developing new solutions tends to emerge in places where the need to change is most urgent. So it is no surprise that it was in the marginal zones where the ideas of the Blue Economy have been adopted at first. Small countries, regions or rural areas, all these are most affected by the fluxes in demographic and global tendencies. It is in these places that jobs are lost the fastest, accompanied by a loss of culture and identity. The Blue Economy provides inspiring examples of how innovations emerge in the most simple of circumstances in the developing world (such as with pulp to protein) or how the most remote areas of Europe have integrated inventions into their daily life – based on common-sense necessity.

Now the metropolises are slowly joining the movement. The continuous reports from the marginal zones have motivated and resulted in an increasing number of implementation of ideas from the Blue Economy in cities. In Germany, Berlin was the first in installing a clustered cascading system. From mushroom cultivation on coffee grounds to combined fish and vegetable productions in inner-city greenhouses, to research and development of new solar systems with European partners; here a network has emerged which implements the cascading system without compromise, always focused on creating products which are cheaper and better.

You are all invited to join the Blue Economy. Thousands of contacts are needed to generate a successful implementation, but every new company creates five to ten jobs on average. This is where the force to change emerges. No matter where you are; in London, Paris, Dublin, Oslo or Madrid: Start building up networks of success and help the Blue Economy to reach its objective of generating jobs. On this pathway you will become acquainted with many new ideas and innovations. Feel free to form alliances, but also check their quality. For this end, Blue Economy principles have been developed which you can look up at www.blueeconomy.eu.

The Blue Economy Foundation as umbrella organization and an independent network of experts have taken on the task of further developing these principles in 2015. This equates to a lot of work ahead of us in which we can use your support. Embrace the principles and utilise them, for they give you components for competitiveness and empower you to see the differences between true innovations and those which “just do a little less bad”. When adopting an innovation, set out for the real “game changers”; products which change the rules of the market and which allow you to create new business models.

The Blue Economy provides you with all of this. Don’t wait: act now!

Markus Haastert

Co-founder of the Blue Economy

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