SCP Publications

Assessing the Environmental Impacts of Consumption and Production - Priority Products and Materials

The environmental and health sciences have brought important insights into the connection of environmental pressures and ecosystem damages. Well-known assessments show that habitat change, the overexploitation of renewable resources, climate change, and particulate matter emissions are amongst the most important environmental problems. Biodiversity losses and ill health have been estimated and evaluated.

This report focuses not on the effects of environmental pressure, but on its causes. It describes pressures as resulting from economic activities. These activities are pursued for a purpose, to satisfy consumption. Environmental pressures are commonly tied to the extraction and transformation of materials and energy. This report investigates the productionmaterials- consumption nexus.

The relative importance of industries, consumption categories and materials varies across the world, as our assessment shows. This assessment offers a detailed problem description and analysis of the causation of environmental pressures and hence provides knowledge required for reducing environmental impacts. It tells you where improvements are necessary, but it does not tell you what changes are required and how much they will contribute to improvements.


Language: English
Publication date: June 2010
Programme: Resource Panel
ISBN: 78-92-807-3084-5
Pages: 110