Green economy growth is more dependent on government policy and programming than other economic sectors. In traditional economic sectors, supports can take the form of ‘supply-side’ interventions, such as through firm-level grants, debt-financing, strategic infrastructure, and research and development services. However, to stimulate green economy growth, these supports must be complemented by ‘demand-side’ interventions aimed at developing public and/or private markets for more sustainable products and services.
In some cases this support simply means matching the conditions that exist in neighbouring jurisdictions. In other cases, unique approaches are required that consider factors specific to Newfoundland and Labrador. There are also outstanding provincial issues, that are not primarily environmental in nature, which when resolved could have a significant green economy impact.
The day to day operations of environmental sector firms in Newfoundland and Labrador are impacted by processes established in assessment, permitting, enforcement, regulation, and legislation as they relate to the environment. How these instruments are designed and implemented can affect an industry’s ability to innovate and compete. In this province, the modernization of these processes can help foster green economy growth.
The growth of any sector is dependent on broad economic development strategies, sector-level initiatives, and also the supports provided at the individual firm-level. There are a number of strong business supports which are already in place at the provincial level. The environmental sector has identified a number of specific opportunities for program improvement or introduction to facilitate green economy growth.
There are a number of important environmental issues facing Newfoundland and Labrador which have economic implications. Some of these issues can be addressed following successful models in comparable jurisdictions. Other issues, unique to the province, will require innovative and home grown solutions. The resolution of these issues will protect, mitigate damage to, or enhance the natural environment while providing green business opportunities in the process.
Industry must have significant opportunity to engage decision-makers and provide input on policies, regulations, strategies, and frameworks which have – or could potentially have – environmental and economic outcomes.
Coinciding with the release of its Provincial Policy Recommendations in Support of Growing Newfoundland & Labrador’s Green Economy document on November 25, 2015, NEIA will record actions undertaken which meet the recommendations the organization has made to its partners.