Our natural environment is composed of both biotic and abiotic raw materials. Their extraction is associated with energy input and often environmental damage. Furthermore, abiotic raw materials are non-renewable resources, at least in reference to human timescales and production times. Their usage should be as efficient as possible in order to provide future generations with sufficient access to raw materials according to the principle of generational equity. Biotic resources such as wood are generally renewable resources, however, their consumption is far from simple due to the land use conflict. The most important approach towards a resource-conserving economy is the absolute reduction of primary raw material consumption by using secondary raw materials. This requires a focus on a circular economy and better knowledge of man-made deposits (e.g. urban mining).