Circular Economy

Circular Economy

Circular economy is a replacement of the previous linear economy which resources are used for production. Products later become waste (Take Make Dispose). The circular economy changes the concept to be production, consumption, and remanufacturing (Make Use Return). This is for sustainable growth based on environmentally-friendly quality of life which is consistent to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations in Target 12: Responsible Consumption and Production. This goal aims to change production, consumption, and effective natural resources consumption, disposition of waste garbage, recycle support with solid waste reduction, and Target 13: Climate Action which help in greenhouse gas emissions causing global warming.

Mahidol University focuses on circular economy which helps with waste reduction. Waste management of Mahidol University starts from consumption, activities, learning by developing knowledge to continuously solve the problems stage-by-stage. Firstly, “Adaptation for Change” in the university starting with waste management in the university brings waste to recycle for reuse purpose. Recyclable waste can be brought to Waste Recycling Bank. Leaf fragments around the university can be made to fertilizer, and organic waste can be made to bio-fermented water. Next, sharing “Knowledge” to society is to pass on knowledge to interested people, to build connection in waste management from household level to provincial level. After that would be upcycling which brings recycled waste to be processed creating new products.

Moreover, the “Sufficiency Model” project under the concept of sufficiency economy philosophy is adapted with university concept. It is displayed through an exhibition located at Environment Conservation Building, Mahidol University, Salaya Campus.

“Adaptation” for “Change” in the university
Waste Recycling Bank

Waste Recycling Bank established in 2009. This campaign is to encourage divisions, students, and staff to change their mindset of waste and behavioral change to start sorting and bringing waste to the Waste Recycling Bank. The Waste Recycling Bank is similar to commercial bank where you can deposit and withdraw cash. The difference is we deposit recyclable waste and withdraw them in cash. There is a software to collect member’s data which is reliable and verifiable.

Everyone can be a member of Waste Recycling Bank. The process of application is easy using only an application form with an identification card. After the date recorded on the system, a bank book will be given. Members can sell their sorted waste and withdraw in cash or deposit with the bank. The purchase price of recyclable waste is clearly announced and adjusted every three months based on the market price.


The project was from 2009-2021. There are more than 2,000 members who have applied for the project and 5,000 general members who have a total amount of recycled waste of more than 2,000 tons, representing a total purchase of recycled waste of more than 11 million baht, with a profit of 10% from sales. Recycled waste will be deposited into the environmental conservation fund. Mahidol University

The project has been running over 10 years. This is to bring recyclable waste of more than 2,000 tons for reuse purpose which separates recyclable waste from others. This also helps governmental waste management.

Apply for membership and deposit-withdraw recycle waste bank

Environmental Conservation Building : Everyday 8.00 a.m. – 3.30 p.m.

Badhanatala Environment Building :Thursday only 8.30 – 11.30 a.m.
Graph showing the amount of recycled waste 2009-2022
Graph showing the amount of recycled waste deposits and operating results for the year 2009-2022
Production of fertilizer from plant waste with aeration pile system

Production of fertilizer from plant waste starting from 2008 by reusing leaf fragments from divisions and common areas of the university to recycle, reduce combustion, and reduce cost of environmental maintenance, leading to the production of fertilizer from plant waste with aeration pile system.

Production of fertilizer from plant waste with aeration pile system starts from crushing the scraps of twigs, leaves and then bringing them to the composting process which takes one month to get complete fertilizer. After brought out to dry in the sun, it is brought back to grinding process once again. Then, leave them for micro-organisms stability for three days, and then they can be used or sold. A sample of fertilizer will be sent for testing which needs to meet the standards of the Department of Agriculture. Throughout the activity period from 2008-2020, Can produce more than 300 tons of compost, worth 1.8 million baht.

Graph showing revenue from compost sales 2011-2022
Bio-fermentation Production

The Environmental Conservation Building became the first location at Mahidol University to produce "bio-fermented water" in 2009, by combining effective microorganisms (EM) with molasses for three days. The benefits of bio-fermentation water can be used in wastewater treatment, eliminate bad odors from garbage, and is used to restore abandoned land by using microorganisms to accelerate the decomposition of organic matter in the soil to make the soil in good condition. It is offer at the rate of 5 baht per liter, with the earnings benefiting Mahidol University’s environmental conservation activity fund Mahidol University.

Graph showing revenue from bio-fermented water sales 2012-2022
Sharing “Knowledge” to Society

The university has the concept of using knowledge and experience from various operations to give the community services. In order to better people's lives and the environment.

Eco Town Project

In 2016, Mahidol University started the project on Eco Town to serve schools with the knowledge on recycled waste bank management and promote the establishment of a recycling waste bank project. This project aims to transfer waste separation knowledge to students, teachers, and parents by providing not only supporting materials, equipment, knowledge, and the programs but also advice and guidance on the management of the recycled waste bank to teachers and students who manage the school's recycled waste bank project as well as demonstrations and guidance on project implementation. As a result, collaboration is essential for achieving practical outcomes and ensuring operational sustainability. We have launched a pilot project for model schools at the early education level with the purpose of instilling waste separation and saving practices.

Knowledge enhancement and understanding of waste reduction for students, teachers, and parents to participate in reducing the amount of waste and generating income from waste to improve people's lives and the environment for their communities and schools, as well as help to create a low-carbon society. The Eco Town project is in line with government policy regarding solid waste and hazardous waste management. This project will help school have a good environment suitable for teaching and learning as well as a model school between educational institutions and community. Schools participated in the project are as follows:

There are 8 schools’ network in Nakhon Pathom Province

1. Phra Tamnak Suankulab Mahamongkol School

2. Kanchanapisek Wittayalai Nakhon Pathom School

3. Nawaminthrachinuthit Satriwitthaya Putthamonton School

4. Matthayompuranawas School

5. Wat Songkanong School

6. Wat Raikhing Wittaya School

7. Wat Suwannaram School

8. Wat Maklue School

From the implementation of the recycling waste bank network project within schools surrounding Mahidol University. This has resulted in collaboration with the government sector with Mahidol University and Nakhon Pathom province signing a cooperation agreement on sustainable waste management in schools and communities. This agreement is intended to carry out the government policy of promoting an efficient waste management system which has trained over 170 schools in Nakhon Pathom province. There was a cooperation signing ceremony and a seminar on the topic of “Sustainable waste management for schools and communities” from experts, there was also a ceremony to present certificates to network schools that participated in the Waste Bank project with Mahidol University, attended by over 800 people on September 17, 2019 at Prince of Mahidol Hall.

Think Cycle Bank

“Going circular...To change the world”

The Recycled Waste Bank Network initiative, which was implemented with schools surrounding Mahidol University, resulted in Thailand's commercial sector interested in creating cooperation. PTT Global Chemical Public Company Limited signed an MOU to implement the concepts and practices of recycled waste bank expansion to schools in Rayong province as part of the "Think Cycle Bank" initiative. This project is implementing the recycled waste bank following government policy, as stated in the partnership on municipal and hazardous waste management.

The Think Cycle Bank project, which uses an online recycling waste bank system, can result in waste reduction, converting waste into value, raising awareness of waste separation behaviors and reuse following the circular economy, and establishing a waste management network from the community to the provincial level. The school networks are as follows:

There are 22 schools’ network in Rayong Province

1. Kohkaew Pissadan School

2. Municipality School 1

3. Municipality School 2

4. Banphe City Child Development Center

5. Wat Khao SamPhao Thong Child Development Center

6. Wat Chaklukya School

7. Wat Mabchalood School

8. Ban Nongfab School

9. Wat Takuan School

10. Khodhinmitraphap 42 School

11. Rayongwittayakom Nikhom Utsakhakam School

12. Wat Mabkha School

13. Wat Khao Samphao Thong School

14. Ban Nong Saphan School

15. Wat Thapma Community School

16. Wat Huai Pong School

17. Wat Noen Kraprok School

18. Wat Prachummit Bamrung School

19. Wat Ban Chang School

20. Bankhaohuaimahad School

21. Ban Phayun School

22. Ban Khao Sok School

There are 3 schools’ network in Buriram Province

1. Municipality School 1

2. Municipality School 2

3. Municipality School 3

Throughout the project, Mahidol University has made visits to several schools to fix concerns. This initiative focuses on resource efficiency and waste management. implementation is consistent with Sustainable Development Goal 12: Responsible Consumption and Production.

Sufficiency Economy Philosophy Learning Room

Sufficiency Economy Philosophy Learning Room is serving as a permanent exhibition of the application of Sufficiency Economy Philosophy into the university’s operations. The exhibition shows at the Environment Conservation Building which is divided in to three zones, as follows:

Zone 1 : Moderation
The first zone serves as a place to explains the theory behind the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy and how to create a model of Khok-Nong-Na.


Zone 2 : Reasonableness
The second zone serve as a place to explains the application of the of the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy in driving a sustainable university (SDGs in Campus) through video media such as water management, clean energy, green space management.


Zone 3 : Self-immunity
The third zone serves as a place to creating knowledge and understanding and instilling knowledge in students through interactive media that can be touched and easily attracts learning such as waste separation and the 5Rs, as well as being an area to showcase work or products from other agencies


For the surrounding the building will be a demonstration area for various operations such as composting, recycling waste bank, vegetable plots, etc., which are linked to the philosophy of Sufficiency Economy.