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How the Danish consumption affects the world's natural resources


The Danish consumption taps into the natural resources - not just domestically, but in major parts of the world. Our planet's resources are not infinite, and the focus on sustainability and pressure on resources is increasing.

This analysis takes a closer look at the use of natural resources in the Danish economy and presents the results of the first assessment of the Danish resource footprint. The resource footprint is an attempt to account for the resources extracted from nature both in Denmark and abroad for the goods and services used in the Danish economy.

Main conclusions:

  • Danish imports in 2016 weighed 63m tonnes. However, the production of imported goods and services is associated with an additional intermediate consumption of 70m and 21m tonnes respectively, so that total imports accounted for a resource footprint of approximately 154m tonnes in 2016.
  • The weight of the goods exported from Denmark in 2016 was 38m tonnes, but behind the production of this was a total extraction of 102m tonnes of raw materials in Denmark and abroad. Moreover, the production of services for export required 35m tonnes of raw materials.
  • Denmark’s resource footprint per capita is considerably bigger than the EU average. Our consumption and investments etc. required extraction of 22 tonnes of raw materials per capita, whereas the EU average was 14 tonnes.
  • The Danish resource footprint has grown since 2013, but is lower than in 2008. Especially the consumption of goods associated with non-metallic minerals, such as stone and gravel for the construction industry, has grown.
How the Danish consumption affects the world's natural resources


How the Danish consumption affects the world's natural resources

Subject group: Environment and energy

Released: 14 February 2020 08:00

No. 2020:04

ISSN pdf: 2446-0354


Bogomil Emilov Iliev