Table of Contents

A Handbook of Industrial Ecology

A Handbook of Industrial Ecology

Edited by Robert U. Ayres and Leslie W. Ayres

Industrial ecology is coming of age and this superb book brings together leading scholars to present a state-of-the-art overviews of the subject. Each part of the book comprehensively covers the following issues in a systematic style: the goals and achievements of industrial ecology and the history of the field; methodology, covering the main approaches to analysis and assessment; economics and industrial ecology; industrial ecology at the national/regional level; industrial ecology at the sectoral/materials level; and applications and policy implications.

Chapter 27: Industrial symbiosis: the legacy of Kalundborg

John R. Ehrenfeld and Marian R. Chertow

Subjects: business and management, management and sustainability, economics and finance, industrial economics, environment, ecological economics, environmental management


John R. Ehrenfeld and Marian R. Chertow Much of industrial ecology is concerned with where resources come from – whether natural or man-made – and where they ultimately wind up. The focus can be on a single element such as lead or nitrogen, a single resource such as energy, or on multiple resources such as energy, water and materials. This focus is applied at different scales: from the facility level, to the inter-firm level, to a river or other regional site and, indeed, globally. The branch of industrial ecology known as industrial symbiosis involves the physical exchange of materials, energy, water and by-products among several organizations. Thus, as indicated in Figure 27.1, it occurs at the inter-firm level. The keys to industrial symbiosis are collaboration and the synergistic possibilities offered by geographical proximity. As such, industrial symbiosis is not simply a passive examination or description of resource flows, but an active means of choosing the ones that are most useful in a localized economic system and arranging them accordingly. Ultimately, industrial symbiosis relies on a much different form of organization than is typical of conventional business arrangements. Therefore this chapter has two goals: (a) to discuss industrial symbiosis as a collective approach to competitive advantage through examination of an Sustainability Industrial Ecology Facility or Firm • design for environment • pollution prevention • ‘green’ accounting Inter-Firm • industrial symbiosis (eco-industrial parks) • product life cycles • industrial sector initiatives Regional/Global • budgets and cycles • materials and energy flow studies (industrial metabolism) Figure 27.1 Industrial...

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