Keywords: economic impact, employment, environmental innovations, work quality, clean technologies, waste management, sustainable production, sustanable development, environmental protection, social sustainability
Quantitative and qualitative employment impacts of environmental innovations
The paper deals with the impact on the quantity and quality of work in companies that adopted clean technologies and environmental innovations (direct effects). Furthermore, indirect effects in companies supplying waste management services and resources are considered as well, in total indicating the potential employment impacts of a more sustainable production system. From the analyses carried out, some general conclusions suggesting a shift towards more sustainable production and environmental innovations can be drawn. Neutral or slightly positive quantitative effects on employment are to be expected, while, at the same time, significant environmental improvements can be achieved by means of environmental protection measures. A noticeable improvement in job quality, desirable from the point of view of social sustainability, is one of the major advantages of clean technologies. Discussing policy issues, the paper concludes that the integration of environmental and social issues into other policy fields, as a major commitment of the European Union economic policy, is far from being substantially provided for.