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Material Flows Links

The page provides useful internet links to organizations active in the area of MFA.


Wuppertal Institute


An interdisciplinary research institute oriented to solving problems in the area of applied sustainability research. The Wuppertal Institute develops guiding principles and concrete concepts for reducing resource use both on macro level (countries, regions, branches) and micro level (companies, households, products, education). The MaRess project (material efficiency and resource conservation) focuses on potential calculations, modelling, policy advice, agenda setting and communication in the field of resource efficiency

Factor Four - best practises


A website, maintained by the Wuppertal Institute, providing best practise examples of products and services following the Factor Four principle (including further links to other best practice websites).

World Resources Institute


WRI is an environmental think tank that goes beyond research to find practical ways to protect the earth and improve people's lives. World Resources Institute provides information, ideas, and solutions to global environmental problems.

TU Vienna “Institute for Water Quality, Resources and Waste Management”


Since the early 1980ies, TU Vienna has been very active with research in the field of substance flow analysis, authoring the first “Practical Handbook of Material Flow Analysis” (CRC/Lewis Publishers) and publishing its MFA/SFA work in more than 400 papers and reports (see http://www.iwa.tuwien.ac.at/htmd2264/publikat/PUBLI1.pdf). Furthermore, TU Vienna has established the first national standard on Material Flow Analysis MFA (ÖNORM S2096-1+2) as well as a Regelblatt 514 of the ÖWAV that is widely used in Austria. .



ConAccount is a network of institutions working on Material Flow Analysis (MFA). The basic objectives of ConAccount are to support the information exchange between the scientists developing MFA and the users of the results, to provide the basis for the development of a coherent framework of MFA methodology, and to promote the use of MFA for statistics and policy.

Ecological Footprint


The Ecological Footprint is an indicator to measure the "use of nature" and increase awareness for sustainable development. Ecological Footprint accounts provide a conservative estimate of humanity's pressure on global ecosystems. They represent the biologically productive area required to produce the food and wood people consume, to supply space for infrastructure, and to absorb the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2) emitted from burning fossil fuels. The Global Footprint Network is an international think tank working to advance sustainability through use of the Ecological Footprint.

UN System of integrated Environmental and Economic Accounting (SEEA)



The System of integrated Environmental and Economic Accounting (SEEA) was developed by UNSD as a satellite system of the System of National Accounts (SNA) to analyze environmental and economic concerns in a common and flexible framework.

The London Group on Environmental Accounting was created in 1993 to provide a forum for practitioners to share their experience of developing and implementing environmental satellite accounts linked to the economic accounts of the SNA. It is currently participating in the SEEA revision process at the request of the Statistical Commission.

International Society for Industrial Ecology (ISIE)


ISIE is a new society that promotes industrial ecology as a way of finding innovative solutions to complicated environmental problems and facilitates communication among scientists, engineers, policymakers, managers and advocates who are interested in how environmental concerns and economic activities can be better integrated.

Institute for Interdisciplinary Research and Education (IFF) ? Department Social Ecology


IFF Social Ecology focuses on the relationship between social and natural systems in the context of sustainable development. Inter-disciplinary approach is a central feature of the work, in both research and teaching.

National Institute for Environmental Studies Japan (NIES)


To tackle the growing environmental problems of the 21st century, NIES has restructured itself to respond to public needs with agility, as a flexible and efficient organization, one of which is "Waste Management and Sustainable Material Cycles" dealing with MFA approaches.


http://www.oecd.org/department/0,2688,en_2649_34441_1_1_1_1_1,00.html http://www.oecd.org/LongAbstract/0,3425,en_2649_34441_2089221_1_1_1_1,00.html

OECD work on indicators to measure decoupling of environmental pressure from economic growth.

OECD work on indicators to measure the decoupling of environmental pressure from economic growth.



EEA Topic report No 11/1999:

Making sustainability accountable: Eco-efficiency, resource productivity and innovation

DG Environment


Commissions web pages on the ?Thematic Strategy on the Sustainable Use of Natural Resources? explaining the background of this Thematic Strategy, what the Commission has done about it and what is planned in the future. There is also information about how you can get involved.

Ecological backpack


An info page on MIPS (material input per service unit), which is a method to calculate the resource use of products, services, companies, life styles etc. The MIPS calculation takes into account all the natural resources used from cradle to grave and displays them in five different categories of resources: abiotic resources, biotic resources, soil used in agriculture and forestry, air, water.
Onedidit.com helps in calculating your own ecological backpack and suggestions to reduce the resource use of your everyday life and lifestyle.