Special Column:Celebration of the 70th Anniversary of IGSNRR, CAS

Material Flow Analysis from and to Its Geo-environment for the National Economy in China

  • Development Research Center, China Geological Survey, Beijing 100083, China

Received date: 2007-08-30

  Revised date: 2008-03-07

  Online published: 2008-07-28


This paper introduced the relations between geo-environment and regional economy, and classified the material flows from and to the geo-environment for a regional economy. With the aim to provide a useful and comprehensive understanding for decision-making in geo-environmental management, this paper estimated material flow data from and to its geo-environment for the socio-economy in China from 2000 to 2005 using the method of material flow analysis. During the six years, the total material requirement of the socio-economy from the geo-environment rose up to 43957 million tons in 2005, much higher than those in the main developed countries such as USA, Germany, Japan, etc. Direct material input from the geo-environment increased to 7438 million tons in 2005, up from 4769 million tons in 2000. Material flow caused by infrastructure construction ranged 25178-28593 million tons, accounting for 59.0%-69.4% of the total material requirement, which became the greatest driving force for the geo-environmental degeneration. The huge material input exerted a greater pressure on domestic geo-environment than in any comparable period before. Although material productivity increased from 240.9yuan/t to 416.5yuan/t, the growth of the economic development in China greatly depended on the exploitation and development of its geological resources, and its sustainability was much lower than the main developed countries. The average material consumption per capita was 33.6 t in 2005, obviously much lower than those in the developed countries. The carrying capacity of domestic geo-environment determined that China can not follow the industrialization patterns which developed countries experienced and must adopt resources-saving strategies to attain a sustainable development pattern.

Cite this article

YANG Jian-feng . Material Flow Analysis from and to Its Geo-environment for the National Economy in China[J]. JOURNAL OF NATURAL RESOURCES, 2008 , 23(4) : 553 -559 . DOI: 10.11849/zrzyxb.2008.04.001


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