What drives Environmental Innovations in the Nordic Pulp and Paper Industry?

Green Markets and Cleaner Technologies (GMCT)

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Policy initiatives have highlighted the importance of environmental innovations as a solution to environmental problems, and looked into ways to promote them. Based on empirical cases in the Nordic pulp and paper industry, this report explores environmentally sounder technological innovations and their relation to societal and economic drivers. The cases studied include the use of production by-products for energy, new products in the core business areas and new product value chains. The report shows that public policy has directly influenced environmental innovation in the P&P industry through providing public R&D support, funding development projects and encouraging cooperation. It has also facilitated the crucial stage of demonstration by creating or enforcing markets for environmental innovations. The success of policy-created markets in supporting innovation is, however, crucially dependent on other market changes that push the development towards improved environmental performance. Environmental policies alone are seldom sufficient drivers for innovations.




Supporting environmental innovations requires consistent efforts that combine and coordinate innovation and environmental policies. ETAP is a good starting point for creating a policy mix for environmental innovation. Innovation support requires drivers that create the base for innovations, factors such as education and basic and applied research, and overall environmental targets that the improvements are aimed at. After the basis is created, more binding requirements are needed to promote the adoption and use of the generated innovations. In addition, public-private partnerships, such as the Forest-Based Sector Technology Platform and the Forest Cluster Ltd, are important in creating visions and action for future innovation.


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