Resource conservation

Resource conservation is defined as the absolute reduction of resource consumption, especially the consumption of primary raw materials. Considerate use of natural resources increases resource efficiency and reduces environmental impacts. In addition to economic approaches for the quantification of resource flows, ifeu also explores specific measures aimed at products and consumption.

Our key research topics

CO2 as raw material

In the post-fossil fuel age of the future, it will be necessary to replace the natural gas and crude oil used to manufacture today’s chemical raw materials and synthetic materials with renewable carbon sources. One option is to use CO2 from a range of sources in biological and chemical processes.


Extractive raw materials

Extractive raw materials belong to the group of abiotic raw materials that are mined as metals or minerals. These non-renewable resources are the foundation for our economic development and the basic components of our goods.


Consumer behaviour

Our current lifestyle must answer societal challenges in the form of sustainable consumption development. At this point, there is a need for a development towards a more sustainable and resource-conserving consumption.


Secondary raw materials

Global population growth, increased consumption and requirements for future technologies, e.g. for the Energy Transition, are among the factors driving primary raw material demand. In consequence, the application of secondary raw materials represents a key instrument for resource conservation. ifeu carries out research in a number of projects on material flows, mapping of anthropogenic deposits and landfill mining.


Economic indicators

A number of indicators including material consumption, material input or raw material productivity have been established to measure the raw material use of individual economies. ifeu collects robust, internationally comparable data on country-specific raw material indicators and develops comparative measurement approaches for statistical authorities.