The concept of ‘green growth’ is yet another promise to align ecology with economy in a win-win-situation. It rests on the idea of an ‘efficiency revolution’: manifold innovations of green and climate-friendly technologies, huge investments to restructure the industrial, building and transport sectors to sustainable modes, and a boost for using resources and energy more productively and efficiently. The suggestion is that national income can continue to grow while attaining sustainability targets at the same time. This study explores a fatal fallacy of the notion of green growth: while vast productivity increases do indeed incentivise a more efficient use of energy (and resources), they raise demand at the same time – which runs counter to the goal of saving energy. Such increased demand as a result of increased productivity is termed a rebound effect. Because rebound effects nullify a considerable proportion of the savings potential of efficiency technologies and measures, continuous economic growth will eventually thwart the much-needed steep reduction of absolute energy consumption.
This Interactive Library aims to facilitate information exchange between stakeholders interested in resource efficiency. A solid and comprehensive information base is needed to create the required integrated policy approach.
Stakeholders are invited to share their resource efficiency related views, findings and reports and/or to browse through the Library.