Published Thursday, 22 March 2012

Green Infrastructure Implementation and Efficiency 

This IEEP led study sets out to expand the knowledge base on green infrastructure initiatives in a number of ways. Firstly, the main existing EU policy measures that can help to support green infrastructure initiatives were identified and outlined. Extensive information was also collated on the variety of green infrastructure initiatives and their implementation in all EU Member States, and more detailed data obtained through seven in-depth case analyses (focusing on ecological networks, the multifunctional use of farmland and forests, the multifunctional use of coastal areas, freshwater and wetlands management and restoration, urban green infrastructure, grey infrastructure mitigation and mapping for planning).

This evidence was then used to carry out an assessment of the contribution that green infrastructure can make to increasing the resilience of ecosystems and the provision of ecosystem services. As far as possible it attempted to quantify impacts on ecosystems and their services, and resulting health and socio-economic benefits. These benefits were compared with costs where feasible to provide an approximate assessment of the cost-effectiveness of the initiatives.

These assessments provided the basis for the development and evaluation of the potential benefits of four different EU policy scenarios ranging from a business as usual scenario (no new policy measures) to progressively more ambitious options including integration of green infrastructure into sectoral policies and legislative measures. The impacts associated with the implementation of each one of those options were assessed.