Sustainable Materials Management

Making Better Use of Resources

image of Sustainable Materials Management

Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) is increasingly recognised as a policy approach that can make a key contribution to green growth and the challenges that are posed by sustained global economic and demogarphic growth. One of the key challenges of the SMM approach is to effectively address the environmental impacts that can occur along the life-cycle of materials, which frequently extends across borders and involves a multitude of different economic actors.   This book outlines a series of policy principles for SMM, examines how to set and use targets for SMM, and explores various policy instruments for SMM.  In addition it provides examples of policy action plans from the UK and the Netherlands, before presenting a series of conclusions and recommendations.




In the 20th century the world population grew 4 times, economic output 22 times and fossil fuel consumption 14 times. The total volume of material extracted or harvested worldwide reached nearly 60 billion metric tons per year in 2007, a 65% increase from 1980 and an estimated 8 fold increase over the last century.


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