Islands are sites of compound events and multiple risks. They are highly vulnerable to the impacts of global warming such as sea-level rise, flooding, droughts, and hurricanes. Practices such as infrastructure development along the coast, high imports, undiversified exports, poor waste management, and centralized energy systems are additional stressors. At the same time, islands are excellent systems for Industrial Ecology scholarship and offer a rare opportunity for sustainability research and transformation. With relatively well-defined boundaries, naturally and socially, they can be “real-world laboratories”, an approach that is gaining momentum in addressing societal challenges.
The Island Industrial Ecology (or Island-IE) section of the ISIE promotes basic and policy-relevant industrial ecology research on islands to foster a transformation to sustainability. The Section encourages combining transdisciplinary approaches to engage stakeholders for more inclusive resource-use patterns on islands. Section members address issues such as resource self-sufficiency, food, and energy security, sustainable water and nutrient management, (disaster) waste management, resilient infrastructure, and the equitable distribution of costs and benefits of resource-use. Concepts applied include (but not limited to) circular economy, socio-metabolic research, industrial symbiosis, decoupling, life-cycle approaches, citizen science, material recoverability, green infrastructure, and nature-based solutions to enhance system resilience.
You can find the bylaws for the Island Industrial Ecology Section here.