An empirical assessment of ecological footprint calculations for Malaysia

Rawshan Ara Begum, Joy Jacqueline Pereira, Abdul Hamid Jaafar, Abul Quasem Al-Amin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper is intended to demonstrate the ecological footprint (EF) calculation for the Malaysian three-sector economy based on the modified input-output (I-O) method and National Footprint Account (NFA), and provide information of the national EF, including its breakdown of the land categories. Based on the modified I-O, each Malaysian requires 0.304 ha of estimated land to support their current consumptions and life styles from the agriculture, forestry and built-up sectors. This figure is substantially lower than the one calculated by the NFA (1.13 gha/cap). Moreover, the EF of agriculture and forestry in the NFA method is higher than the modified I-O calculations whereas the EF for built sector shows the opposite. The EFs generated by the two methods are very different; the reason is the different weightings of economic activities and lack of detailed land use data. This kind of deficiency can be overcome if the required land use data are available. Not withstanding this, a standard and equitable approach to calculate the EF should first be agreed upon. On the other hand, Malaysia's EF appears to be smaller than that of the developed countries (US, Canada or UK), but larger than that of other ASEAN countries. The largest contributor to the EF for each Malaysian is energy consumption. Instead, a major difference between EF of Malaysia and other ASEAN countries appears to the use of energy land. Thus, any effort to reduce energy consumption will serve to reduce the EF of the country. In this context, perhaps it is time to seriously review the issue of energy subsidies in Malaysia, particularly in light of the country's aspiration for sustainability in development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)582-587
Number of pages6
JournalResources, Conservation and Recycling
Volume53
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2009

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ecological footprint
footprint
ASEAN
forestry
agriculture
land use
calculation
Ecological footprint
Malaysia
economic activity
energy
sustainability

Keywords

  • Ecological footprint
  • Energy consumption
  • Malaysia
  • Modified I-O method
  • NFA method

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Economics and Econometrics

Cite this

An empirical assessment of ecological footprint calculations for Malaysia. / Begum, Rawshan Ara; Pereira, Joy Jacqueline; Jaafar, Abdul Hamid; Al-Amin, Abul Quasem.

In: Resources, Conservation and Recycling, Vol. 53, No. 10, 08.2009, p. 582-587.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Begum, Rawshan Ara ; Pereira, Joy Jacqueline ; Jaafar, Abdul Hamid ; Al-Amin, Abul Quasem. / An empirical assessment of ecological footprint calculations for Malaysia. In: Resources, Conservation and Recycling. 2009 ; Vol. 53, No. 10. pp. 582-587.
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