Decoupling for ecological sustainability : A categorisation and review of research literature

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Vaden , T , Lähde , V , Majava , A , Jarvensivu , P , Toivanen , T , Hakala , E & Eronen , J T 2020 , ' Decoupling for ecological sustainability : A categorisation and review of research literature ' , Environmental Science & Policy , vol. 112 , pp. 236-244 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsci.2020.06.016

Title: Decoupling for ecological sustainability : A categorisation and review of research literature
Author: Vaden, T.; Lähde, Ville; Majava, A.; Jarvensivu, P.; Toivanen, T.; Hakala, Emma; Eronen, J. T.
Contributor organization: Toxic Crimes: Human Rights and the Destruction of the Environment during Conflict
Creative adaptation to wicked socio-environmental disruptions (WISE STN)
Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science (HELSUS)
Ecosystems and Environment Research Programme
Past Present Sustainability (PAES)
Date: 2020-10
Language: eng
Number of pages: 9
Belongs to series: Environmental Science & Policy
ISSN: 1462-9011
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsci.2020.06.016
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/345840
Abstract: The idea of decoupling "environmental bads" from "economic goods" has been proposed as a path towards sustainability by organizations such as the OECD and UN. Scientific consensus reports on environmental impacts (e.g., greenhouse gas emissions) and resource use give an indication of the kind of decoupling needed for ecological sustainability: global, absolute, fast-enough and long-enough. This goal gives grounds for a categorisation of the different kinds of decoupling, with regard to their relevance. We conducted a survey of recent (1990-2019) research on decoupling on Web of Science and reviewed the results in the research according to the categorisation. The reviewed 179 articles contain evidence of absolute impact decoupling, especially between CO2 (and SOX) emissions and evidence on geographically limited (national level) cases of absolute decoupling of land and blue water use from GDP, but not of economy-wide resource decoupling, neither on national nor international scales. Evidence of the needed absolute global fast-enough decoupling is missing.
Subject: Decoupling
Economy
Resources
Sustainability
GDP
ECONOMIC-GROWTH
ENERGY-CONSUMPTION
INDICATORS
FOOTPRINT
TRENDS
DEMATERIALIZATION
TRANSITION
INTENSITY
PROGRESS
FLOWS
1172 Environmental sciences
Peer reviewed: Yes
Rights: cc_by_nc_nd
Usage restriction: openAccess
Self-archived version: acceptedVersion


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