From 2 November 2020, the autumn semester 2020 will take place online. Exceptions: Courses that can only be carried out with on-site presence. Please note the information provided by the lecturers via e-mail.

151-0944-00L  Case Studies on Earth's Natural Resources

SemesterSpring Semester 2020
LecturersM. Mazzotti
Periodicityyearly recurring course
CourseDoes not take place this semester.
Language of instructionEnglish


AbstractBy working on case studies, built around everyday consumer products, and by applying engineering principles (e.g. material and energy balances), students will gain insight into natural resources, their usage in today's society, the challenges and the opportunities ensuing from the need to make their use long-term sustainable.
ObjectiveThe students are supposed to gain insight about our natural resources, and how their usage and supply relate to our society and to us as individuals. The students will analyse how the natural resources form and change, how they are extracted and used, and how we can utilize them in a sustainable way.
ContentThe students will analyze processes and products in terms of their use of natural resources. The study will use everyday consumer products as examples, will use engineering principles together with physics and chemistry fro the analysis, and will be based on documentation collected by the students withe the help of lecturer and assistants. Through these examples, the students will be made familiar with issues about the circular economy and recycling.
Lecture notesHandouts during the class.
LiteratureWalther, John V., "Earth's natural resources", (2014) Jones & Bartlett Learning // Oberle, B., Bringezu, S., Hatfield-Dodds, S., Hellweg, S., Schandl, H., Clement, J., "Global Resources Outlook 2019: Natural resources for the future we want - A Report of the International Resource Panel", (2019) United Nations Environment Programme.
Prerequisites / NoticeStudents must be enrolled in a MSc or doctoral program at ETH Zurich.