Green virtual enterprises and their breeding environments
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The Industrial Ecology (IE) is a new interdisciplinary field focused on sustainable development. IE aims to the shifting of industrial processes from open-loop systems where different resources move through a system to become wastes to a closed-loop system where wastes become inputs for new processes. This paper introduces a Green Virtual Enterprise (GVE) model as an emerging sustainable manufacturing and logistics mode focused on offering, delivering and recovering green products to/from the market, under a lifecycle thinking and supported by its source network. GVEs creation is considered within a GVE breeding environment context, which acts as a long-term collaborative network aimed at offering the conditions to efficiently promote the sharing and recycling of resources such as: information, materials, water, energy and/or infrastructure with the intention of increasing economic gains and achieving sustainable development. © 2010 IFIP.