Philippine resource efficiency in Asian context : Status, trends and driving forces of Philippine material flows from 1980 to 2008

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

25 Scopus Citations
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  • Anthony S.F. Chiu
  • Liang Dong
  • Yong Geng
  • Corazon Rapera
  • Emee Tan


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)63-73
Journal / PublicationJournal of Cleaner Production
Online published25 Mar 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2017
Externally publishedYes


Resource efficiency and sustainable resource management is critical to transitional economies to forward their pathway to sustainable development. To date, material flows analysis (MFA) and its database has become mature tools to diagnose the national resource utilization and efficiency, but still, few attentions and systematical analysis have been done for developing countries. With this circumstance, this paper conducted an innovative try on the in-depth MFA research on Philippines and its comparison in the Asian context, as an added value to current global MFA studies. Firstly, Philippine material flows from 1980 to 2008 and designed indicators reflecting resource utilization intensity and efficiency were analyzed and compared with other typical Asian economies. Dematerialization analysis based on modified Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) was further applied, so as to investigate the coupling statements and trends of resource consumption and economic growth in Philippines and compared with other Asian countries. Finally, driving forces for the changes of material flows were investigated with decomposition approach based on IPAT (Impacts = Population × Amenity × Technology) in periods divided according to key domestic development stages. Results highlighted a fluctuation of material flows, which in line with the unstable development (1980s to early 2000s) periods in Philippines. While in its stable development (after early 2000s), the EKC-like curve was revealed, indicating increasing resource consumption stage and requirement on strengthening resource efficiency countermeasures. IPAT analysis highlighted the critical role of economic instability on the fluctuation of DMC in the periods of 1980–1986, 1986–1996 and 1996–2002. While in the period of 2002–2008, with economy recovery and stable development, DMC increased and significantly offset by resource efficiency enhancement (DMC/GDP). In Asian context, compared with mature developed countries like Japan, Philippines didn't reach the real dematerialization stage yet. While with comparison to fast developing countries like China and Malaysia, Philippines was by far achieving the material prosperity together with economic prosperity. Therefore, with setting stable economic as priority, to enhance resource efficiency measures like cleaner production and regional eco-industrial development, market measures on resource price and tax, as well as decision support tool development are critical to Philippines’ future sustainable resource management. With above highlights, this paper expects to provide critical insights to the ever-improvement of Philippines and other Southeast Asian countries’ resource efficiency and resource management.

Research Area(s)

  • Dematerialization, IPAT, Material flow analysis, Philippines, Resource efficiency

Citation Format(s)