Material flow accounting and analysis: A Valuable Tool for Analyses of Society-Nature Interrelationships

This paper aims at summarizing methodological foundations and the state of the art in the rapidly emerging field of material flow accounting and analysis (MFA). 1. Introduction 2. Historical development of MFA 3. Methodological foundations 4. Categories of material flows 5. A general scheme for economy-wide MFA 6. Indicators derived from economy-wide MFA 7. The LCA-oriented method for calculating indirect material flows 8. The input-output based approach for calculating indirect flows 9. Main applications of economy-wide MFA 10. Shortcomings of the MFA approach 11. State of the art in economy-wide MFA 12. Selected empirical results 13. Extensions and further methodological development of MFA