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Memorandum for a Green Economy

Cover page: Memorandum for a Green Economy

Climate change, resource scarcity, biodiversity loss and a growing world population will compel us to establish even stronger links between the economy and ecology in the context of sustainable development. To achieve this, we need growth and innovation – both in industrialised countries and in developing and emerging economies.

Germany has already made great progress in greening the economy. Today, we need far fewer raw materials and less energy, and emit fewer pollutants than ten years ago for the same yield. What is more: the green economy provides enormous market opportunities. Environmental and efficiency technologies are drivers of growth along the entire industrial value chain. They profit from being rooted in traditional branches of industry while at the same time advancing the modernisation of these industries, for example mechanical engineering and vehicle construction, the chemical and the electrical industry. Energy and raw material efficiency are becoming increasingly important as competitive factors in these sectors.The global market volume of environmental and efficiency technologies already totals around 2 trillion euros. According to recent estimates made for the new Greentech Atlas 3.0, this volume will more than double in the next ten years.

Policymakers and industry must work together to further strengthen the innovative capacity of German businesses in these key markets of the future, and to ensure that German industry is able to live up to its responsibility in value creation. The German government has laid decisive foundations for the ongoing process of greening our economy. Maintaining industry’s global competitiveness with a level playing field will always be a focus in this, allowing Germany to combine growth, innovation and sustainability in its social market economy.

This is the approach the Federal Environment Ministry and the Federation of German Industries are promoting in their joint memorandum on the occasion of the Rio 2012 conference.

Last update: June 2012