This report for the Dutch Ministry for Infrastructure and the Environment, researches how environmental laws can advance innovation, and whether current environmental law is in line with his or perhaps hampers innovation. We primarily focus on the Netherlands Environment Act, which has rules on the environment, water, nature conservation, and land use planning. Empirical research into several cases in which radical innovation was pursued (sometimes successful, sometimes unsuccessful) shows that Dutch environmental laws, currently, do not stimulate innovation following the guidelines described above. Instead, environmental laws, at best do not hinder innovations. Other constraints than those present in environmental law are more relevant, such as a non-cooperative attitude with individual government officials. Companies indicate that their enthusiastic new ideas and proposals are often met with skepticism. Often government officials first say: “no, this is impossible”, as they (especially those trained as lawyers!) are used to think in worst case scenarios, and aim for regulating against all possible negative consequences. When asked what the background of their response is, and both the official and the business representative jointly look for a solution for the underlying problem, it often appears that easy solutions exist.
|Translated title of the contribution||Towards smart environmental regulation that stimulates innovation|
|Place of Publication||Tilburg|
|Commissioning body||Netherlands Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment|
|Number of pages||59|
|Publication status||Published - 26 Feb 2015|
- smart regulation
- environmental law