Resource productivity in 7 steps

How to develop eco-innovative products and services and improve their material footprint

Without radical dematerialization there will be no economic sustainability.In his book “The Call Girls” Arthur Koestler once noted „About feelings of gloom and warnings ofdoom. These two attitudes must not be confused. It is a great mistake to confuse them. A warning
serves a preventive, a positive purpose. A warning must be life-affirming. The geese on the Capitolwere not gloomy, Cassandra was. So the geese succeeded with their warning and Cassandra did not”.
For many years we in the environmental protection business were considered Cassandras. Unfortunately the climatic changes and Katrina in New Orleans – among many other recent desasters – made us look more like geese.
It is 20 years since I came to the conclusion that the physical root cause for the ecological failure ofour economy is the extravagant consumption of natural resources. This may sound trivial today, but atthat time I was pretty much alone with this opinion.
Still today, some 90% of the material lifted from nature does not appear in final goods! I proposed atenfold dematerialization of western technologies on average as a conditio sine qua non for approachingsustainable conditions, and my co-workers later showed in enterprises throughout Europe andJapan that very substantial savings in resource inputs are achievable with state of the art technologywithout loss of end-use satisfaction.

further information: Resource Productivity in 7 steps

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