If on average one kilogram of natural resources is converted into production of EUR 2.2, taking purchasing power into account, the rate for Estonia is EUR 0.9 and for Bulgaria and Romania EUR 0.8. The Netherlands (€ 4.5), Italy (€ 3.7), Luxembourg (€ 3.5) and Belgium (€ 3.4) achieved the highest number of points.
The resource productivity rate links a country’s economy to its resource use. Resource productivity increases when a country’s economy grows faster than its hunger for resources, the latter being measured in terms of domestic material consumption (DMC). The EU average was EUR 1.2 per kilogram of raw materials in 2000 and had risen to EUR 2.2 (purchasing power standard) by 2019, as a Eurostat report shows.
After the 2008-2009 economic crisis, which hit material-intensive sectors hardest, there was a sharp increase in resource productivity.
DMC varies greatly from one Member State to another. Italy and the Netherlands consume 8 to 9 tons of natural resources per capita, while Estonia and Finland consume around 30 tons per person. The use of biomass varies between two and eight tons per person and is highest in Finland thanks to the timber industry and Ireland and Denmark, which are the main meat producers. Fossil fuel consumption is similar in most Member States, around three tonnes per person. However, the latter indicator was nine tonnes per person in Estonia, reflecting the country’s oil shale energy sector.
Countries with a higher population density tend to use fewer resources per capita than sparsely populated Member States such as Estonia and Finland, according to Eurostat.
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