In the following article, we introduce a method called economically extended material flow analysis (EE-MFA), which aims at studying causal relationships between economically motivated human behaviour and resource consumption. For this purpose, we expand MFA with economic information. This method is evaluated by applying it in a case study on resource efficiency in the food production chain. EE-MFA reduces the shortcomings of a technically oriented MFA by including a description of the inputs and outputs in money units without changing the system structure. This benefit is shown in the status quo analysis of “to nourish” where data from various sources could be compiled to set up a consistent model of material, energy and money flows. A further value addition of the method is that it creates a basis for a multi-criteria evaluation of strategies to improve resource efficiency on a regional scale. One result of this multi-criteria evaluation is a classification of strategies according to their influence on the materials, energy and money flows.
Journal of Cleaner Production – Elsevier
Published: Oct 1, 2004
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