The Role of Policy in Unlocking the Potential of Resource Efficiency Investments

  • Nick HughesEmail author
  • Paul Ekins


By enabling greater economic output with less resource consumption, and fewer corresponding environmental impacts, increasing resource efficiency should, it might be argued, be attractive both for its economic and environmental benefits. However, it often remains the case that resource efficiency potential is not fully exploited.

In this chapter, we argue that a combined environmental and economic benefit—or “win-win” outcome—from resource efficiency policies, is possible. However, realising the “win-win” requires carefully coordinated policy packages, holistically designed so that policies across different areas act to reinforce each other.

This chapter brings together the concepts and arguments presented throughout this book, and distils key implications and principles for policy makers. We discuss various barriers which prevent actors from spontaneously applying resource-efficient options, and the policy responses that could increase resource efficiency in each of those areas. Following this, we then discuss the importance for achieving the “win-win” effect, of coordination across policy areas.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for Sustainable ResourcesUniversity College LondonLondonUK

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