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|Urban Economies Resource Productivity and Decoupling: Metabolism Trends of 1996--2011 in Sweden, Stockholm, and Gothenburg Resource productivity and evidence of economic decoupling were investigated on the basis of the time series in 1996-2011 of material flow analysis for Sweden, Stockholm, and Gothenburg. In the three cases, absolute reductions in CO2 emissions by about 20% were observed, energy consumption per capita decreased, while gross domestic product (GDP) per capita grew. The energy consumption of the residential and public sectors decreased drastically, while the transport energy consumption is still growing steadily. Decoupling of the economy as a whole (i.e., including materials) is not yet happening at any scale. The domestic material consumption (DMC) continues to increase, in parallel with the GDP. The rate of increase for DMC is slower than that for GDP in both Stockholm and Sweden as a whole (i.e., relative decoupling). The metabolism of the cities does not replicate the national metabolism, and the two cities each have their own distinct metabolism profiles. As a consequence, policy implications for each of the case studies were suggested. In general, because of the necessarily different roles of the two cities in the national economy, generic resource productivity benchmarks, such as CO2 per capita, should be avoided in favor of sectorial benchmarks, such as industry, transport, or residential CO2 per capita. In addition, the share of the city impacts caused by the provision of a service for the rest of the country, such as a port, could be allocated to the national economy.||Urban Economies Resource Productivity and Decoupling: Metabolism Trends of 1996--2011 ...||Kalmykova, Yuliya and Rosado, Leonardo and Patrício, João||Journal Article||2015||
Economy-Wide Material Flow Analysis (EW MFA)
|City-Level Decoupling: Urban resource flows and the governance of infrastructure transitions Building upon previous work of the International Resource Panel on Decoupling Natural Resource Use and Environmental Impacts from Economic Growth, this report examines the potential for decoupling at the city level. While the majority of the world's population now live in cities and cities are where most resource consumption takes place, both the pressures and potentials to find ways to reconcile economic growth, wellbeing and the sustainable use of natural resources will therefore be greatest in cities. Analysing the role of cities as spatial nodes where the major resource flows connect as goods, services and wastes, the report ‘s focus is how infrastructure directs material flows and therefore resource use, productivity and efficiency in an urban context. It makes the case for examining cities from a material flow perspective, while also placing the city within the broader system of flows that make it possible for it to function. The report also highlights the way that the design, construction and operation of energy, waste, water, sanitation and transport infrastructures create a socio-technical environment that shapes the 'way of life' of citizens and how they procure, use and dispose of the resources they require. Its approach is innovative in that it frames infrastructure networks as socio-technical systems, examining pressures for change within cities that go beyond technical considerations. The importance of intermediaries as the dominant agents for change is emphasized, as well as the fact that social processes and dynamics need to be understood and integrated into any assessment of urban infrastructure interventions and the reconfiguration of resource flows. A set of 30 case studies provide examples of innovative approaches to sustainable infrastructure change across a broad range of urban contexts that could inspire leaders of other cities to embrace similar creative solutions. Of course, innovations in and of themselves do not suffice if they are not integrated into larger strategic visions for the city, and as each city is unique, interventions need to be tailored to the set of challenges and opportunities present in each case.||City-Level Decoupling: Urban resource flows and the governance of infrastructure ...||UNEP||Report||2013||