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Global effects of national biomass production and consumption: Austria's embodied HANPP related to agricultural biomass in the year 2000

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  • Haberl, Helmut
  • Kastner, Thomas
  • Schaffartzik, Anke
  • Ludwiczek, Nikolaus
  • Erb, Karl-Heinz

Abstract

Global trade of biomass-related products is growing exponentially, resulting in increasing ‘teleconnections’ between producing and consuming regions. Sustainable management of the earth's lands requires indicators to monitor these connections across regions and scales. The ‘embodied human appropriation of NPP’ (eHANPP) allows one to consistently attribute the HANPP resulting from production chains to consumers. HANPP is the sum of land-use induced NPP changes and biomass harvest. We present the first national-level assessment of embodied HANPP related to agriculture based on a calculation using bilateral trade matrices. The dataset allows (1) the tracing of the biomass-based products consumed in Austria in the year 2000 to their countries of origin and quantifying the HANPP caused in production, and (2) the assigning of the national-level HANPP on Austria's territory to the consumers of the products on the national level. The dataset is constructed along a consistent system boundary between society and ecosystems and can be used to assess Austria's physical trade balance in terms of eHANPP. Austria's eHANPP-trade balance is slightly negative (imports are larger than exports); import and export flows are large in relation to national HANPP. Our findings show how the eHANPP approach can be used for quantifying and mapping the teleconnections related to a nation's biomass metabolism.

Suggested Citation

  • Haberl, Helmut & Kastner, Thomas & Schaffartzik, Anke & Ludwiczek, Nikolaus & Erb, Karl-Heinz, 2012. "Global effects of national biomass production and consumption: Austria's embodied HANPP related to agricultural biomass in the year 2000," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(C), pages 66-73.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:84:y:2012:i:c:p:66-73
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2012.09.014
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    2. Anastasia Wolff & Natacha Gondran & Christian Brodhag, 2017. "Detecting unsustainable pressures exerted on biodiversity by a company. Application to the food portfolio of a retailer," Post-Print emse-01575571, HAL.
    3. Roux, Nicolas & Kastner, Thomas & Erb, Karl-Heinz & Haberl, Helmut, 2021. "Does agricultural trade reduce pressure on land ecosystems? Decomposing drivers of the embodied human appropriation of net primary production," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 181(C).
    4. Ji, Xi & Liu, Yifang & Meng, Jing & Wu, Xudong, 2020. "Global supply chain of biomass use and the shift of environmental welfare from primary exploiters to final consumers," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 276(C).
    5. Joselin Herbert, G.M. & Unni Krishnan, A., 2016. "Quantifying environmental performance of biomass energy," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 292-308.

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