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Economy-wide material flow accounts describe in units of mass (tonnes) the volume of materials extracted, transferred or transformed from nature. This volume of materials and its ratio to other National Accounts aggregates describes the material dependency of the national economy and the pressures economic activities impose on the environment. The main interest lies in the development of the ratio between GDP and the volume of materials required to generate it. Economy-wide material flow accounts sum up the flows of used materials, such as stone, oil and wood. However, due to the summing up, the total figures of the material flow accounts do not describe direct the weight and nature of the environmental burden caused by economic transactions. The economy-wide material flow accounts form part of environmental accounts. The ultimate goal of environmental accounts is to describe the interaction between the environment and the economy by mainly using the same basic concepts and classifications as National Accounts. The European Union's regulation concerning environmental accounts (No. 691/2011) obliges the Member States to compile an annual report on their economy-wide material flow accounts; for the first time in 2013 and starting from statistical reference year 2008. In the UN's System of Environmental-Economic Accounts (SEEA) the accounts form part of the description of physical flows in the national economy.

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Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Economy-wide material flow accounts [e-publication].
ISSN=2242-1289. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 1.3.2024].
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