More than any other leader in modern history, Nelson Mandela understood that a society must bridge divides and work together to thrive. He also firmly believed that we must strive to leave our children with a safer, more peaceful and more prosperous world than the one we inherited. He said that “there can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children”.
Behavioural insights can help policy makers obtain a deeper understanding of the behavioural mechanisms contributing to environmental problems, and design and implement more effective policy interventions. This report reviews recent developments in the application of behavioural insights to encourage more sustainable consumption, investment and compliance decisions by individuals and firms.
Drawing on interventions initiated by ministries and agencies responsible for environment and energy, as well as cross-government behavioural insights teams, it portrays how behavioural sciences have been integrated into the policy-making process. The report covers a variety of policy areas: energy, water and food consumption, transport and car choice, waste management and resource efficiency, compliance with environmental regulation and participation in voluntary schemes. It shows what has proven to work – and what has not – in policy practice in OECD countries and beyond.
This report provides insights on the political economy of biodiversity related policy reforms. It draws on existing literature and four new case studies covering the French tax on pesticides, agricultural subsidy reform in Switzerland, EU payments to Mauritania and Guinea-Bissau to finance marine protected areas via conservation trust funds, and individually transferable quotas for fisheries in Iceland. Each case study focusses on the drivers of reform, the types of obstacles encountered, key features of the policy reform, and the lessons learned from the reform experience.
Where to find OECD environmental data? As international concern about global environment and sustainable development becomes more pressing, government, business and the public all need reliable and harmonised data on the environment.
Green growth is about fostering economic growth and development while ensuring that natural assets continue to provide the resources and environmental services on which our well-being relies. Governments need indicators that can raise awareness, measure progress and identify potential opportunities and risks.
After decades of regulation and investment to reduce point source water pollution, OECD countries still face water quality challenges (e.g. eutrophication) from diffuse agricultural and urban sources of pollution, that is disperse pollution from surface runoff, soil filtration and atmospheric deposition. The relative lack of progress reflects the complexities of controlling multiple pollutants from multiple sources, their high spatial and temporal variability, associated transactions costs, and limited political acceptability of regulatory measures. This report outlines the water quality challenges facing OECD countries today, presents a range of policy instruments and innovative case studies of diffuse pollution control, and concludes with an integrated policy framework to tackle diffuse water pollution. An optimal approach will likely entail a mix of policy interventions reflecting the basic OECD principles of water quality management – pollution prevention, treatment at source, the polluter pays and beneficiary pays principles, equity, and policy coherence.
Korea has improved access to environmental services and become a world leader in climate change mitigation technology.
The GGKP held a webinar on 8 March to explore evidence-based research on how behavioural science can further resource efficiency and sustainable consumption. Watch the webinar recording.
Save the date: The 2017 GGSD Forum will focus on “Greening the Ocean Economy” by exploring how the ocean-based industries and policies can help preserve and sustain marine and ocean resources and ecosystems while also obtaining economic development; and will take place on 21-22 November 2017 at the OECD conference Centre in Paris, France.
Estonia needs to move faster to reduce its dependence on oil shale so it can advance towards a greener economy and reduce air pollution and waste generation, according to a new OECD report.