Environmental footprint analysis of an urban community and its surrounding bioregion

Geoffrey Hammond, Trevor Iddenden, Jane Wildblood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (SciVal)
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Environmental or ecological' footprints have been widely used as partial indicators of sustainability; specifically of resource consumption and waste absorption transformed in terms of the biologically productive land area required by a population. The environmental footprint of the Unitary Authority of Bath and North East Somerset (BANES) in the South West of England (UK) has been estimated in terms of global hectares (gha) required per capita. BANES has a population of about 184 870 and covers an area of 35 200 ha, of which two-thirds are on green belt' land. The UNESCO World Heritage City of Bath is the principal settlement, but there are also a number of smaller urban communities scattered among its surrounding area (hinterland' or bioregion'). The overall footprint for BANES was estimated to be 3.77 gha per capita (gha/cap), which is well above its biocapacity of 0.67 gha/cap and Earthshare' of 1.80 gha/cap. Direct energy use was found to exhibit the largest footprint component (a 31% share), followed by materials and waste (30%), food and drink (25%), transport (10%) and built land (4%), whereas the water footprint was negligibly small (1/40%) by comparison. Such data provide a baseline for assessing the Council's planning strategies for future development.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2100002
Pages (from-to)31-47
Number of pages17
JournalProceedings of the ICE - Urban Design and Planning
Issue number1
Early online date3 Feb 2022
Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2022


  • Local government
  • Sustainability
  • Town & city planning
  • local government
  • town & city planning
  • sustainability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Urban Studies
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Architecture


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