Consumption, innovation and the environment

Focus

  • The CIRCLE project

    Several major long-term trends shape the potential for economic growth around the world. The Costs of Inaction and Resource scarcity: Consequences for Long-term Economic growth (CIRCLE) project aims to identify how feedback from poor environmental quality, climatic change and resource scarcity affect economic growth, and how policies may alter this.

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  • Household consumption

    Environmental pressures from households are significant, and without continued policy efforts their impacts are likely to intensify over the coming years. The analysis of environmental policy from the demand side is thus receiving increasing attention from governments but developing growth strategies that promote greener lifestyles and consumption patterns remains a challenge.

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  • Environmental policy and technological innovation

    Technological change is undoubtedly one of the keys to ensuring that economic growth and environmental improvements co-exist. As such it is vitally important that environmental policies and policy instruments provide the right incentives for the development and diffusion of ‘environmental’ technologies.

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PUBLICATIONS

Greening Household Behaviour

Greening Household Behaviour: Overview from the 2011 Survey

Developing growth strategies that promote greener lifestyles requires a good understanding of the factors that affect people's behaviour towards the environment. Recent OECD work based on periodic surveys of more than 10 000 households across a number of countries and areas represents a breakthrough by providing a common framework to collect unique empirical evidence for better policy design.

This publication presents a data overview of the most recent round of the survey implemented in five areas (energy, food, transport, waste, and water) and 11 countries: Australia, Canada, Chile, France, Israel, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.

Energy and Climate Policy

Energy and Climate Policy: Bending the Technological Trajectory

Technological innovation can lower the cost of achieving environmental objectives, so it is important to understand how environmental policy design and technological innovation are linked. This is particularly true in the area of climate change where the estimated future costs of reducing greenhouse gas emissions are affected greatly by the technological trajectory of the economy. While we suspect that public policy can play an important role in accelerating the development and diffusion of climate change mitigation and adaptation technologies, empirical evidence in this area remains scant. This book presents a series of papers that explore the extent to which technological innovation can lower the cost of achieving climate change mitigation objectives.

Invention and Transfer of Environmental Technologies

Invention and transfer of environmental technologies

Inducing environmental innovation is a significant challenge to policy-makers. Efforts to design public policies that address these issues are motivated by the fact that innovations can allow for improved environmental quality at lower cost.

The work presented in this book is brought together in five substantive chapters: environmental policy design characteristics and their role in inducing innovation, the role of public policies (including multilateral agreements) in encouraging transfer of environmental technologies, followed by three ‘sectoral’ studies of innovation in alternative fuel vehicles, solid waste management and recycling, and green (sustainable) chemistry.

  Greening Household Behaviour

Greening Household Behaviour: The Role of Public Policy

This publication presents the main results and policy implications of an OECD survey of more than 10 000 households in 10 countries: Australia, Canada, the Czech Republic, France, Italy, Korea, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden.  It offers new insight into what policy measures really work, looking at what factors affect people’s behaviour towards the environment in five areas: water use, energy use, personal transport choices, organic food consumption, waste generation and recycling.