Ökologische Modernisierung der Wirtschaft durch eine moderne Umweltpolitik – Synthesebericht

Ökologische Modernisierung der Wirtschaft durch eine moderne Umweltpolitik - adelphi
Knopf, Jutta; Ingmar Mundt, Robert Kirchner, Walter Kahlenborn, Jürgen Blazejczak, Dietmar Edler, Wolf-Peter Schill, Christian Sartorius und Rainer Walz 2016: Ökologische Modernisierung der Wirtschaft durch eine moderne Umweltpolitik. Synthesebericht. Dessau-Roßlau: Umweltbundesamt (UBA).

The present study (in German language) focuses on the ecological modernisation of the German economy through the adaptation of a modern environmental policy, highlighting how such a strategic transformation may have positive macro-economic effects on the economy and broader society in the medium to long-term.

However, the results also make clear that the ecological modernisation of the German economy will entail high political and economic involvement in the short-run, stemming largely from the necessity for a quick implementation of the transformation in view of meeting the federal government’s current sustainability goals. Such rapid realisation of the modernisation of Germany’s economy necessitates certain high initial investments, which should however, over time, amortise and eventually turn into sources of revenue.

Within the economic modernisation, necessary transformations may not conform to the interests of all actors involved, although, as this study makes clear, overall positive economic effects will be achieved. In order to foster deliberative and majority-supported decision-making, the initiation of dialogue between government, business and civil society is imperative.

According to the results of this study, an ambitious modernisation of the economy would not only internalise external costs in accordance with the polluter pays principle, but would also bear positive effects on employment and economic growth. At the same time, skills training requirements increase.

In summary, this study makes clear in numerous ways that an ambitious and well-instrumented ecological modernisation will not act as a deterrent to the economy, particularly over the medium to long-term, but will instead generate innovation and sustainability.