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Waikato Region Ecological Footprint 2004

Report: TR 2006/50
Author: Market Economics

Abstract

This report estimates the ecological footprint of the Waikato region for the year ending March 2004. The ecological footprint measures the total amount of productive land (in hectares) required to support a given population. It is increasingly being used as an indicator of sustainability performance after being developed by Mathias Wackernagel and William Rees in the early 1990s.

An input-output framework based on Bicknell et al. (1998) and extended by McDonald (2000, 2001, 2001a), McDonald and Patterson (2003, 2004), and Patterson and McDonald (2002) is used in this report to calculate Waikato region’s ecological footprint.

Waikato Region Ecological Footprint 2004
(254 kb, 36 seconds to download, 56k modem)



Table of contents

Executive Summary iv
1 Introduction 1
1.1 Scope of the Report 1
1.2 The Ecological Footprint Concept and its Measurement 1
1.2.1 What is the Ecological Footprint? 1
1.2.2 How is the Ecological Footprint Calculated? 2
1.2.3 Input-Output and Ecological Footprinting 2
1.3 Key Definitions 3
1.3.1 Location Quotient 3
1.3.2 Ecological Footprint Components 3
1.4 Report Structure 4
2 Methodology 5
2.1 Rationale for the Input-Output Framework 5
2.2 Data Sources 6
2.3 Methodology for Measuring Ecological Footprints Using Input-Output Framework 7
2.3.1 Generation of the Waikato Region Input-Output 8
2.3.2 Estimation of the Land Appropriated from within Waikato Region 9
2.3.3 Estimation of Land Appropriated from Other Regions 9
2.3.4 Estimation of Land Appropriated from Abroad 10
2.3.5 Energy Land 10
3 Waikato Region's Ecological Footprint 11
3.1 Profile of the Region 11
3.2 Overall Ecological Footprint 11
3.3 Comparisons with Other Countries 12
3.4 Ecological Footprint Disaggregated by Land Type 14
3.5 Ecological Footprint Disaggregated by Goods and Services 16
3.6 Ecological Balance of Trade and Ecological Interdependencies 17
3.6.1 Exports and Imports by Economic Industry 18
3.7 Comparison of Waikato Region Ecological Footprints Across Time 18
3.8 Footprinting of other Resources 20
3.9 Footprinting, Policy and Resource Reductions 25
3.9.1 Footprinting as a Policy Tool 25
3.9.2 Reducing our Footprint 26
4 Conclusions and Recommendations 29
4.1 Review of Methodological Framework 29
4.1.1 Key Strengths of Ecological Footprinting 29
4.1.2 Key Strengths of Adopting an Input-Output Framework 29
4.1.3 Key Issues with Ecological Footprinting 30
4.2 Key Findings 30
4.2.1 Updating the Ecological Footprint Analysis 31
5 References 33
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