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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.
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Chapter 38: Industrial ecology and spatial planning

Clinton J. Andrews


Clinton J. Andrews This chapter links IE to geography and the planning of our built environment. First, it illustrates why spatial questions – ‘where? how far?’ – are important in IE. Second, it briefly discusses the difficulty and importance of aligning the IE perspective with political geography. Third, it defines spatial planning and describes its origins. The fourth and longest section shows how spatial planning practices affect the implementation of IE ideas. The chapter closes with an argument that there are important conceptual linkages between the intellectual projects of IE and planning. Town planning, urban planning and regional planning are familiar, almost prosaic activities of governments worldwide. The connections to IE include both the practical, such as the design of industrial parks, and the conceptual, such as the role of utopian visions in guiding incremental decisions. Planners and industrial ecologists have much to offer one another. WHY GEOGRAPHY MATTERS Geography influences and even defines economic and ecological phenomena, and hence industrial ecologists cannot ignore it. Most obviously, resources are unevenly distributed in space, so that the bundle of environmental characteristics varies by location. Materials as diverse as air pollutants, water and mineral deposits all differ in concentration by orders of magnitude from place to place. The spatial incidence of humans and other species both reflects and influences this variation (Redman 1999). Distance-related frictions affect the diffusion of species as well as the details of producer and consumer behavior, industrial...

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