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Sci Total Environ. 2010 Oct 15;408(22):5273-83. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2010.07.081.

Emergy analysis of an industrial park: the case of Dalian, China.

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Institute of Applied Ecology, Chinese Academy of Science, Shenyang, Liaoning Province (110016), PR China.


With the rapid development of eco-industrial park projects in China, evaluating their overall eco-efficiency is becoming an important need and a big challenge academically. Developing ecologically conscious industrial park management requires analysis of both industrial and ecological systems. Traditional evaluation methods based on neoclassical economics and embodied energy and exergy analyses have certain limitations due to their focus with environmental issues considered secondary to the maximization of economic and technical objectives. Such methods focus primarily on the environmental impact of emissions and their economic consequences. These approaches ignore the contribution of ecological products and services as well as the load placed on environmental systems and related problems of carrying capacity of economic and industrial development. This paper presents a new method, based upon emergy analysis and synthesis. Such a method links economic and ecological systems together, highlighting the internal relations among the different subsystems and components. The emergy-based method provides insight into the environmental performance and sustainability of an industrial park. This paper depicts the methodology of emergy analysis at the industrial park level and provides a series of emergy-based indices. A case study is investigated and discussed in order to show the emergy method's practical potential. Results from DEDZ (Dalian Economic Development Zone) case show us the potential of emergy synthesis method at the industrial park level for environmental policy making. Its advantages and limitations are also discussed with avenues for future research identified.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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