Circular economy – a new approach in the understanding of the human–environment relationship. The work presented the assumptions of the circular economy as a new concept of the economy functioning with the method of production “from cradle to cradle” constituting the opposition to the commonly used linear economy approach (take, make, dispose). Work discussed also the impact on the quality of human life and the management of environmental resources. Functional assumptions of the circular economy and its territorial dimension were presented, especially in urban areas where the green economy and sharing economy mechanisms are used. The potential for economic growth and the creation of new jobs was also emphasized due to the implementation of circular economy in the EU countries.