Analysis on international policy trend of MFA (Material Flow Accounting/Analysis) - based on indicators for resource productivity and the possibility of international cooperation for developing countreis-

Event: 5th Internatonal Conference on Industrial Ecology "Transition Towards Sustainability", 21-24 June 2009, Lisbon, Portugal

By experiencing the recent price fluctuation of resources, sustainable resource management, including waste management and resource circulation, is becoming a renewed policy concern for both developed and developing countries.

Unless material flows are monitored on a regular basis, it is difficult to design policies for improved resource efficiency at national level and not possible to assess whether such policies are effective. Material Flow Accounts (MFA) is a methodology to meet such needs.

This study conducted in FY 2007 as a commissioned research from Ministry of the Environment of Japan, tried to identify reasons why MFA and economy-wide resource productivity are given higher priority by some countries than by others. This study consists from three parts of surveys.

First part is a comparative study of the selected OECD countries on the use of MFA in their environmental policy design. Second part shows the result of more detailed survey to the governmental officials of G8 countries on their opinions on MFA-related indicators and policy target-setting. Also, the third part of the study assessed the national capacity for MFA in selected non-OECD countries and discusses how this capacity could be enhanced.


This is a result of a commissioned research from Ministry of the Environment of Japan. IGES is planning to publish a report based on this research.