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WP12B Material Flow Accounting, Substance Flow Analysis and Input-Output Analysis Studies
() Industrial metabolism and material flow analysis as strategic decision support system.
Friend, Gil1, Jaber, David1, 1 Natural Logic, Inc., Berkeley, CA, USA
ABSTRACT- Metabolic Flow Analysis (MFA) provides a powerful framework for systematic assessment and benchmarking of environmental performance, and helps identify design and innovation opportunities to improve environmental quality and efficiency at companies, industrial clusters, communities and regions. For this to happen most effectively, MFA systems should (and underlying data) should: be accessible to relevant internal and external stakeholders (both individually and in groups), subject to appropriately gated security controls; be readily manipulable to disclose trend, pattern and context, including normalization to any potentially relevant factors - as determined by the users - in addition to "consensus metrics"; be accessible to non-technical users with a minimum of training; provide for ready comparative benchmarking between facilities within a company, companies in an industry, and suppliers in a supply chain; link transparently to existing data management and operating systems, to eliminate unnecessary delays and transcription errors in making data available to users; support standard reporting conventions (eg, Global Reporting Initiative) and should fundamentally serve strategic and decision support needs An industrial metabolism (IM) perspective to MFA generates powerful questions, like "why produce product we don't sell?" MFA provides a stark and challenging answer to the question "what business are we really in?" - and can uncover significant hidden profit potential. Regional metabolic analysis (RMA) enables strategic targeting of industries that add greatest net value, and guides economic development to filling the gaps in the regional metabolic web. From this perspective, we discuss such Key Sustainability Indicators as return on resources (ROR), Product-to-NonProduct Ratio (P2NP), and Carbon Footprint (CF); how they are selected in individual companies; and how they are used to identify, evaluate and drive performance opportunities at enterprise and industry level.
Key words: material flow, industrial metabolism, key performance indicators, sustainability
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