A dimensionally consistent aggregation framework for biophysical metrics
AbstractWe develop a formal representation of the economy-ecosystem interaction problem by distinguishing between stock-flow, and fund-flux spaces (Georgescu-Roegen, 1971). We then define dimensionless quantities in both the cardinal stock-flow space and the ordinal fund-flux space. This leads to analytic definitions of natural capital and natural income in the fund-flux space. We show that a stock-fund representation of the economy-ecosystem interaction problem helps investigate aggregation properties of biophysical metrics. In particular, we show how a metric that is dimensionally consistent in the stock-flow space can have dimensional problems in the fund-flux space. Ecological footprint is used as an illustrative example. Finally, we argue that dimensionally consistent metrics are keys to further the development of biophysical assessments as a tool for practical environmental policy.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal Ecological Economics.
Volume (Year): 70 (2011)
Issue (Month): 5 (March)
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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/ecolecon
Stocks and funds Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen Biophysical assessment Dimensional consistency Natural capital and natural income Ecological footprint;
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