A HOLISTIC SOCIOECOLOGICAL SYSTEMS APPROACH AT THE REGIONAL LEVEL – THE EMPI (EMMI).

Erik Grönlund

Abstract


In this paper the EMPI [EMMI] approach is described together with its use and intended use in the Mid Sweden region, the counties of Jämtland and Västernorrland. EMPI is an abbreviation of the Swedish words “Energi, Materia, Pengar och Information”, which in English gives EMMI: Energy, Matter, Money, and Information. The EMPI [EMMI] approach has to some extent so far been used in a project assessing the ecosystem services in the five northern counties of Sweden, “Norrland”, and later in a strategic document regarding energy and climate on the county level. The emergy methodology (by H.T. Odum) has been the inspiration for the EMPI [EMMI] approach. But since the emergy concept is not yet fully accepted by the scientific community, the EMPI [EMMI] approach does not use the controversial parts of the emergy approach, but rather has the aim to work as a general background material for any regional analysis, may it be emergy, ecological footprint, material flow or substance flow assessements, regional monetary accountings or other types. Finally future plans for the EMPI [EMMI] approach is presented, as application on the watershed level connected to the EU Water Framework Directive, and further development of the ecosystem services concept. Maybe most interesting is that the work with the EMPI [EMMI] and emergy approaches have revealed a lack of measure for quality aspects of information. The scientific community seem today only use the quantitative measure of information, the bit, while the general public definition of information includes a large qualitative aspect.


Keywords


emergy; regional; socioecological

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