Developing countries are still on a rising curve of production and pollution. Rapid industrialization, and the construction of large, material-intensive metropolitan centres, and related transport and distribution networks, mean that these countries are replicating the resource use patterns typical of the earlier phases of development in the industrialized world. The environmental efficiency now being sought in industrialized countries is often seen as a luxury in developing countries.
Efforts to increase environmental efficiency, reduce waste and introduce recycling are growing and spreading. It is widely recognized, at least by many NGOs and the wealthiest governments in OECD, that a tenfold reduction in resource consumption in industrialized countries is a necessary long-term target if adequate resources are to be released for the needs of developing countries (von WeizÃ¤cker and others 1995, OECD 1998).