Decoupling (impact)

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Term Info
Decoupling (impact)
Category Sustainable Development Terms
Last Edit By FIDIC
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Last Edit Date 2018-06-20

Decoupling (impact) means :

SDABC2015.png The ABC for Sustainable Cities - A glossary for policy makers. 1st edition (2015)

Impact decoupling requires increasing economic output while reducing negative environmental impacts. Such impacts arise from the extraction of required resources (such as groundwater pollution due to mining or agriculture), production (such as land degradation, wastes and emissions), the use phase of commodities (for example transport resulting in CO2 emissions), and in the post-consumption phase (again wastes and emissions). Methodologically, these impacts can be estimated by life cycle analysis (LCA) in combination with various input-output techniques (see UNEP, 2010b). Impact decoupling means that negative environmental impacts decline while value is added in economic terms. On aggregate system levels such as a national economy or an economic sector, it is methodologically very demanding to measure impact decoupling, because many environmental impacts need to be considered, their trends may be quite different or not even monitored across time, and system boundaries as well as weighting procedures are often contested.

UNEP (2011) Decoupling natural resource use and environmental impacts from economic growth, A Report of the Working Group on Decoupling to the International Resource Panel. Fischer-Kowalski, M., Swilling, M., von Weizsäcker, E.U., Ren, Y., Moriguchi, Y., Crane, W., Krausmann, F., Eisenmenger, N., Giljum, S., Hennicke, P., Romero Lankao, P., Siriban Manalang, A., Sewerin, S.