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Is Eco-Efficiency a Sufficient Strategy for Achieving a Sustainable Development? The Norwegian Case

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  • Carlo Aall

    ()
    (Western Norway Research Institute, P.O. Box 163, N-6851 Sogndal, Norway)

  • Idun A. Husabø

    ()
    (Western Norway Research Institute, P.O. Box 163, N-6851 Sogndal, Norway)

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    Abstract

    A split review of the environmental impact of Norwegian consumption and production over the last decade illustrates that rising consumption is eliminating the bonus of eco-efficiency in production. Two key drivers behind this situation are the large increase in person and goods transportation and an increase in wealth that has allowed Norwegians to spend more on purchasing products and services. To achieve a sustainable development in rich countries, two major adjustments to the prevailing environmental policy are suggested: (1) The environmental impact of consumption should also be monitored as part of the official sustainability indicator monitoring system, e.g., by calculating the ecological footprint. (2) A specific consumption focus in environmental policy should be developed, beginning with the consumption categories with the largest footprint (volume) and the most negative development (change).

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    File URL: http://www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/2/12/3623/pdf
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    File URL: http://www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/2/12/3623/
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by MDPI, Open Access Journal in its journal Sustainability.

    Volume (Year): 2 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 12 (November)
    Pages: 3623-3638

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    Handle: RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:2:y:2010:i:12:p:3623-3638:d:10318

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    Web page: http://www.mdpi.com/

    Related research

    Keywords: ecological footprint; eco-efficiency; sustainable development;

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    1. Munksgaard, Jesper & Pedersen, Klaus Alsted, 2001. "CO2 accounts for open economies: producer or consumer responsibility?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 327-334, March.
    2. Herman E. Daly, 1968. "On Economics as a Life Science," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 76, pages 392.
    3. Lenzen, Manfred & Murray, Joy & Sack, Fabian & Wiedmann, Thomas, 2007. "Shared producer and consumer responsibility -- Theory and practice," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 27-42, February.
    4. van den Bergh, Jeroen C. J. M. & Verbruggen, Harmen, 1999. "Spatial sustainability, trade and indicators: an evaluation of the 'ecological footprint'," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 61-72, April.
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