The principal aim of the OECD Environmental Performance Review programme is to help member and selected partner countries improve their individual and collective performance in environmental management by:

  • helping individual governments assess progress in achieving their environmental goals;

  • promoting continuous policy dialogue and peer learning;

  • stimulating greater accountability from governments towards each other and public opinion.

This report reviews Switzerland’s environmental performance since the second review in 2007. Progress in achieving domestic objectives and international commitments provides the basis for assessing the country’s environmental performance. Such objectives and commitments may be broad aims, qualitative goals or quantitative targets. A distinction is made between intentions, actions and results. Assessment of environmental performance is also placed within the context of Switzerland’s historical environmental record, present state of the environment, physical endowment in natural resources, economic conditions and demographic trends.

The OECD is indebted to the government of Switzerland for its co-operation in providing information, for the organisation of the review mission to Bern (28-30 November 2016) and for facilitating contacts both inside and outside government institutions.

Thanks are also due to the representatives of the Czech Republic, Lukáš Pokorný, and of the European Commission, Rayka Hauser (Directorate-General for Environment) for examining Switzerland’s environmental performance.

The authors of this report were Gérard Bonnis, Raphaël Jachnik, Aleksandra Paciorek and Alexa Piccolo (all OECD Secretariat), Félix-A. Boudreault and Rachel Samson (consultants). Nathalie Girouard provided oversight and guidance. Mauro Migotto provided statistical support; Annette Hardcastle provided editorial and administrative support; and Rebecca Brite copy-edited the report. Preparation of this report also benefited from inputs and comments from several members of the OECD Secretariat, including Joëlline Bénéfice, Jane Ellis, Florens Flues, Guillaume Gruère, Katia Karousakis, Xavier Leflaive, Patrice Ollivaud, Ronald Steenblik, Simon Upton, Kurt Van Dender, Václav Vojtech and Frédérique Zegel.

The OECD Working Party on Environmental Performance discussed the draft Environmental Performance Review of Switzerland at its meeting on 27 June 2017 in Paris, and approved the Assessment and Recommendations.