Quotation Krausmann, Fridolin, Schandl, Heinz, Eisenmenger, Nina, Giljum, Stefan, Jackson, Tim. 2017. Material Flow Accounting: Measuring Global Material Use for Sustainable Development. Annual Review of Environment and Resources 42 (1),




The growing extraction of natural resources and the waste and emissions resulting from their use are directly or indirectly responsible for humanity approaching or even surpassing critical planetary boundaries. A sound knowledge base of society’s metabolism, i.e., the physical exchange processes between society and its natural environment and the production and consumption processes involved, is essential to develop strategies for more sustainable resource use. Economy-wide material flow accounting (MFA) is a framework that provides consistent compilations of the material inputs to national economies, changes in material stocks within the economic system, and material outputs to other economies and the environment. We present the conceptual foundations of MFA and derived indicators and review the current state of knowledge of global patterns and trends of extraction, trade, and use of materials. We discuss the relation of material use and economic development and the decoupling of material use from economic growth in the context of sustainable resource use policies.


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Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Journal article
Journal Annual Review of Environment and Resources
Citation Index SCI
Language English
Title Material Flow Accounting: Measuring Global Material Use for Sustainable Development
Volume 42
Number 1
Year 2017
Reviewed? Y
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1146/annurev-environ-102016-060726


Giljum, Stefan (Details)
Eisenmenger, Nina (Institute for Social Ecology, Austria)
Jackson, Tim (University of Surrey, United Kingdom)
Krausmann, Fridolin (Institute for Social Ecology, Austria)
Schandl, Heinz (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Australia)
Institute for Ecological Economics IN (Details)
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