chapter  1
12 Pages

Introduction

In a recent report, Towards Sustainable Household Consumption, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) showed how the environmental impact of household activities has increased over the last three decades and how it is set to intensify over the next 20 years. Some of the trends the OECD considers most worrying include the growth in household waste, increasing energy demand and regional imbalances in water supply (OECD, 2002). The OECD concludes that achieving environmental sustainability in households will require a ‘shift [in] the structure of consumption’ (OECD, 2002, p14).