more completely. As with other types of material use, but especially in this case, dematerialization (accomplishing a given design goal with a substantially smaller amount of material) could contribute substantially.

  1. Develop an understanding of the patterns and driving forces of human consumption of resources. This research would involve studying material consumption patterns across time, in different countries, and at different levels of economic activity, with the aim of understanding how differences develop, why the patterns change, and what changes might be anticipated in the next several decades. The results would aid in understanding current patterns of material flows and provide a basis for anticipating societal drivers of those flows in the future.

  2. Formulate models for possible global scenarios of future industrial development and associated environmental implications. This research would draw on contemporary material budgets, predictions of technological developments, studies of consumption patterns, and assessments of industry structure and environmental law and policy to predict how specific circumstances or policy options might strongly influence industry-environment interactions in the next several decades. Thus, this research constitutes the equivalent for impacts of resource and material use of scenario exercises such as those of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (1996).

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