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Article

Informing Sustainable Consumption in Urban Districts: A Method for Transforming Household Expenditures into Physical Quantities

Urban Metabolism Group, Department of Architecture and Civil Engineering, Chalmers University of Technology, 412 58 Gothenburg, Sweden
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Sustainability 2020, 12(3), 802; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12030802
Received: 24 December 2019 / Revised: 17 January 2020 / Accepted: 20 January 2020 / Published: 21 January 2020
Interventions targeted at district-level are a potentially effective way to reduce consumption-based urban impacts; however, a systematic method for accounting these impacts at district scale has not yet been developed. This article outlines a method for transforming household expenditure data into consumption quantified on a physical basis. Data sources are combined to calculate monetary value per unit mass for different products consumed by households. Socio-economic household archetypes are selected, and typical consumption for these archetypes is calculated by combining expenditure data from a household budget survey with the calculated monetary values per unit mass. The resulting physical quantities of different products consumed are envisaged as an essential part of performing district scale material flow analysis and urban metabolism studies, also as an input for assessing consumption-based environmental impacts and for designing sustainable consumption policies. The method was applied to characterise consumption in urban districts. The obtained results were used to assess of districts’ consumption-based impacts with life cycle assessment (LCA) and to inform design of sharing economy. The method was found to be an effective way to evaluate the demand for products in different districts; this in turn could inform objective measures to aid more sustainable urban consumption. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban metabolism; district material flow analysis; sustainable consumption; household consumption; consumption-based impact; environmental impact; sharing economy urban metabolism; district material flow analysis; sustainable consumption; household consumption; consumption-based impact; environmental impact; sharing economy
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MDPI and ACS Style

Whetstone, A.; Kalmykova, Y.; Rosado, L.; Lavers Westin, A. Informing Sustainable Consumption in Urban Districts: A Method for Transforming Household Expenditures into Physical Quantities. Sustainability 2020, 12, 802. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12030802

AMA Style

Whetstone A, Kalmykova Y, Rosado L, Lavers Westin A. Informing Sustainable Consumption in Urban Districts: A Method for Transforming Household Expenditures into Physical Quantities. Sustainability. 2020; 12(3):802. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12030802

Chicago/Turabian Style

Whetstone, Alice, Yuliya Kalmykova, Leonardo Rosado, and Alexandra Lavers Westin. 2020. "Informing Sustainable Consumption in Urban Districts: A Method for Transforming Household Expenditures into Physical Quantities" Sustainability 12, no. 3: 802. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12030802

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