The Netherlands is one of the most prominent and innovative countries in the field of environmental planning. Since the 1990s, its government has introduced such groundbreaking schemes as Integrated Environmental Zoning, the City Environment Project and the Bubble Concept, and new approaches to coping with noise, odours, soil pollution, air pollution and safety issues. These initiatives and policy tools reflect a rapidly changing and decentralizing environmental policy, which contrasts with more conventional environmental ideologies. However, at present, little is know of these policies in the international arena. In this text, Gert de Roo provides an overview and critical analysis of Dutch environmental planning. He shows how and why the country's planning system has moved away from its traditional top-down structure. The resulting changes have had far-reaching consequences for the traditional principles of Dutch Environmental policy. For example, contaminated soil no longer has to be cleaned up completely and national noise legislation is being dismantled in favour of local initiatives. In addition, measures for compensating excessive environmental loads are now open to discussion and environmental quality is a subject of negotiation among stakeholders. Environmental issues are no longer seen as issues that should be dealt with separately from other issues. It is recognized that environmental issues are often influenced by their local context and that policy must therefore be formulated in coherence with other area-related issues. Shared governance and participative decision-making are seen to be equally important. All these developments mean that environmental policy-making has become more closely integrated with local initiatives that focus on general location-specific qualities. In this book, this development is referred to as tailor-made comprehensive planning , which relates closely to the local context, is area-specific, situation-dependent and embraces shared governance. Despite the fact that these developments in environmental planning in the Netherlands have raised a number of difficult questions, they have also created many interesting possibilities for dealing with environmental issues in complex situations.
Professor Gert de Roo
Series edited by
Professor Donald Miller
, Dr. Nicole Gurran
Ashgate Publishing Limited
Country of Publication:
Series: Urban Planning and Environment
28 November 2003
Professional and scholarly
Contents: Introduction. Part A: Environmental/Spatial Conflicts in a Changing Context: Externalities and the 'Grey' environment; The compact city. Part B: Complexity and Pluriformity: Planning-oriented action in a theoretical perspective. Part C: Interaction and Changing Goals in Area-Specific Environmental Policy: The standardisation and institutionalisation of environmental policy; A decision-making model based on complexity; Liveability on the banks of the IJ; From 'Command-and-Control' planning to shared governance; References; Abbreviations; Legislation; Index.
Gert de Roo, University of Groningen, The Netherlands
Reviews for Environmental Planning in the Netherlands: Too Good to be True: From Command-and-Control Planning to Shared Governance
'...Gert de Roo clearly outlines in his most interesting book, environmental planning is much more than just formulating intentions and targets. He shows very clearly by means of many examples that planning methods will fail if they don't take the complexity of local decision-making into account...' Professor Henk Voogd, University of Groningen, Netherlands 'Professor de Roo's new book makes two principal contributions to our knowledge. First, he provides an informed description and a balanced, critical assessment of some important Dutch environmental planning initiatives that can provide ideas for practice elsewhere. Second, he develops and applies a framework for planning in complex situations that is an original contribution to planning theory.' Professor Donald Miller, University of Washington, USA 'The book...is to be welcomed in making Gert de Roo's work more generally accessible...a convincing account of the evolution of a more socially integrated approach to environmental protection that will have considerable resonance and drive in many different contexts.' Journal of Environmental Planning and Management