Dutch government responsible for fifth of the Netherlands’ carbon footprint

Dutch government responsible for fifth of the Netherlands’ carbon footprint

According to recent research conducted by the National Institute for Public Health and Environment (RIVM), purchases made by the Dutch government account for 18 percent of the Netherlands’ carbon footprint. 

Dutch government responsible for 18 percent of carbon footprint

While the government may be taking steps to cut emissions and make the Netherlands a fully circular economy by 2050, the RIVM has revealed that the government itself could play a significant role in reducing the country’s carbon footprint. 

In 2019, the government purchased 85 billion euros worth of products and services, accounting for 15 percent of the total purchase of products and services in the Netherlands in that year and 18 percent of the country’s carbon footprint, generating 22 megatonnes of carbon dioxide.

The RIVM’s research also looked into government procurement of land and raw materials and found that the Dutch government accounted for 23 percent of raw material consumption and nine percent of all land procurement in the Netherlands.

RIVM advocates for socially responsible procurement

By behaving in a more “socially responsible” way, the RIVM says the government can make a “significant contribution” to achieving the 2050 deadline. Through “socially responsible procurement,” the government can work towards a “climate neutral, circular and socially inclusive economy." 

In order to help achieve this, the RIVM has worked with two consultancy firms, Metabolic and Purfacts, to develop a method to determine how much government organisations spend in total, what they spend the money on, and what the environmental impact of this spending is.

Victoria Séveno


Victoria Séveno

Victoria grew up in Amsterdam, before moving to the UK to study English and Related Literature at the University of York and completing her NCTJ course at the Press Association...

Read more



Leave a comment