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Environmental technologies

Environmental technologies are all around us. They include wind turbines and solar panels, but also clean cars and certain washing powders.

They are any technology that, when compared to other similar technologies, does the same thing but with a low environmental impact.

The EU’s Lisbon Strategy identifies economic, social and environmental aspects as key to growth.

Eco-innovations and environmental technologies can make an important contribution towards this goal. Europe recognises that it needs to invest more in innovative ways to protect the environment whilst boosting competitiveness.

The European Commission has therefore developed a policy to stimulate the development and uptake of environmental technologies – the European Environmental Technologies Action Plan, or ETAP.

The UK sees environmental technologies as a top priority, because of their potential to deliver sustainable development. Environmental technologies are relevant to a wide spectrum of Defra's work, already featuring strongly in the department's programmes on climate change, energy efficiency, renewable energy and waste reduction, treatment and recycling.

To better focus on the implementation of ETAP policy in the UK, Defra established an environmental technologies.

Page last modified: 7 April 2009
Page published: 30 April 2004