The Gesellschaft für Wirtschaftliche Strukturforschung and the Wuppertal Institute have been commissioned with this project by the German Federal Environment Agency, funded in the framework of the Environmental Research Plan (UFO Plan). It aims to raise the German consumer awareness of a globally justified and sustainable resource use which means that industrial societies will have to reduce their resource demand drastically in the future.
The project assesses the raw-material stock of durable household goods and determines short and mid term sustainable resource budgets. It will thus allow to map the sustainability gap of German households in relation to durable goods for the years 2015 and 2030. An interactive web application will communicate this to the public. The application provides an opportunity to test individually whether the personal household configuration complies with the limits of sustainability for the most relevant raw-materials identified in the course of the project.
The study is conducted in four work packages out of which Wuppertal Institute is mainly responsible for WP 1 and WP 2.
The special scientific interest of the Wuppertal Institute is to compile material stocks of households within different types of households. Major focus is therefore the assessment of material flows in households, which are induced by consumer decisions and needs, as well as their environmental relevance and criticality in the context of global resource supply.