Research and analysis

Future of cities: urban metabolism

Report looking at energy and material use in cities and the implications for environmental sustainability.


Urban metabolism: a review in the UK context


Urban metabolism analysis looks at cities as though they are a living organism. It considers all the processes that occur in cities:

  • inflows of material and energy resources
  • outflows of wastes and emissions
  • retention of materials as stock in buildings and infrastructure

This report explores issues of urban metabolism and the implications for environmental sustainability.

The working paper was commissioned as part of the Foresight future of cities project.

Published 28 October 2015