chapter  1
32 Pages

Industrial Metabolism: Roots and Basic Principles

WithA.J.D. Lambert

This chapter presents a brief review of the work done by authors who first proposed the disciplines of study and related concepts. It explains how industrial ecology is embedded within the development of related disciplines and describes the basic concepts of industrial metabolism. The essential aspect in which industrial ecology differs from other approaches is in the comparison between the industrial system and the natural ecological system. Environmental economics, a branch of macroeconomics that is close to mainstream economics, has made an important contribution to the understanding of the interaction between human activities and the environment. Environmental consciousness has emerged primarily from concern for human well-being in addition to concern for the salvation of habitat and biodiversity. The relationship between the biotic and the abiotic environments in ecology is replaced in industrial ecology by the relationship between the industrial system and its biotic and abiotic environments.