Seventy percent to 80 percent of the total environmental impact is from automobiles, air transport, food (meat and dairy, chief among them), home and related energy use, including heating, cooling and energy-using appliances.
Contributors to the special issue, Priorities for Environmental Product Policy, examined the impacts of products in Cardiff, Wales, in Germany, Belgium, Sweden, Denmark, Norway and the Netherlands, and in the European Union (EU) as a whole.
The most recent and influential studies on the relative impact of consumption activities are featured. All independently conducted, the studies conclude that a consistent and robust priority list of product groups can serve as a guide for environmental improvement programs undertaken by industry and government.
In many countries, environmental policy that is centered on production, use and disposal of products, rather than just pollution from smokestacks and drainpipes, is gaining acceptance. The European Union and China are banning hazardous substances from electrical and electronic products, for example, and Japan is implementing a green purchasing law.
"The research findings reported in the special issue are important because they help pinpoint the most problematic types of consumption, which include activities that are now commonplace in our lives such as air transport," said Gus Speth, dean of the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. "That should lead to clearer priorities and better decisions."
"This special issue demonstrates the power of industrial ecology," says Reid Lifset, editor-in-chief of the Journal of Industrial Ecology. "Concepts and tools that lie at the core of this field, such as life-cycle assessment and input-output analysis, help us to gain a much better understanding of the relative importance of specific categories of consumption for the pressures on the environment."
Dispersal of Fish Eggs by Water Birds – Just a Myth?
19.02.2018 | Universität Basel
Removing fossil fuel subsidies will not reduce CO2 emissions as much as hoped
08.02.2018 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
A newly developed laser technology has enabled physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (jointly run by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics) to generate attosecond bursts of high-energy photons of unprecedented intensity. This has made it possible to observe the interaction of multiple photons in a single such pulse with electrons in the inner orbital shell of an atom.
In order to observe the ultrafast electron motion in the inner shells of atoms with short light pulses, the pulses must not only be ultrashort, but very...
A group of researchers led by Andrea Cavalleri at the Max Planck Institute for Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) in Hamburg has demonstrated a new method enabling precise measurements of the interatomic forces that hold crystalline solids together. The paper Probing the Interatomic Potential of Solids by Strong-Field Nonlinear Phononics, published online in Nature, explains how a terahertz-frequency laser pulse can drive very large deformations of the crystal.
By measuring the highly unusual atomic trajectories under extreme electromagnetic transients, the MPSD group could reconstruct how rigid the atomic bonds are...
Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...
For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.
In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...
Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale
Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...
15.02.2018 | Event News
13.02.2018 | Event News
12.02.2018 | Event News
23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
23.02.2018 | Health and Medicine
23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy