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Green Economy Report North Rhine-Westphalia 2022


Ministry of Climate Protection, Environment, Agriculture, Nature, and Consumer Protection



„The green economy is an economic success. Now we need to establish whether it lives up to its ecological solution promise.“
Jannis Lambert, Senior Project Coordinator

The North Rhine-Westphalia Green Economy Report has already established itself as successful, published in the fourth edition after previous editions in 2015, 2017 and 2020. With the wider perspective on climate adaptation, the 2022 Green Economy Report takes a closer look at this central field of action for NRW – particularly in view of the recent flood catastrophe. We are currently working on the next version of the Environmental Economic Report for NRW, which will be published in 2024. 

The assignment

The Green Economy Report provides a solid foundation for an important cross-sectional and future-oriented industry. It highlights the economic and, in future, ecological importance of the environmental economy, its development and its priorities, as well as its international positioning. The results of the Green Economy Report are designed to support the state government in their implementation of the environmental economic strategy and are used in the context of their networking and economic promotion work.

How we proceed

In order to capture the green economy in economic terms, the Prognos experts used the envigos demarcation model. Within the scope of this study, the demarcation approach was extended to include climate adaptation.

The economic analysis was conducted in a differentiated manner for the various sub-markets and market segments of the cross-sectional sector. In addition to the state level, the situation and competencies in the individual North Rhine-Westphalia regions were examined as well as international markets.

A new methodological approach was being developed for the main topic of the ecological impact study, based on the envigos model.

Core results

The green economy is one of North Rhine-Westphalia’s economic heavyweights. In 2021, more than 582,000 people found sustainable work in the industry, representing around 6.1 percent of all employees in North Rhine-Westphalia. The environmental economy has thus proven its position as a leading industry.

In addition to employment and gross value creation, the ecological benefits of the NRW environmental economy can be estimated at around 23 billion euros. This performance consists of two components: the environmental economy, for example, makes it possible to avoid environmental damage amounting to 15.5 billion euros that could not be anticipated without the intervention of their products and services. In addition, the environmental economy creates a further ecological value of 7.4 billion euros through the preservation of biodiversity or landscapes.

North Rhine-Westphalia is home to a wealth of companies that offer solutions for how to adapt to the inevitable consequences of climate change. A climate adaptation economy is emerging as a new and fundamental component of the environmental economy. In total, around 30.5 percent of all employees in the North Rhine-Westphalia green economy in 2021 were linked to climate adaptation technologies and services.

Links and downloads

Report 2022 (PDF in German,

Press release of the NRW Ministry of the Environment, in German (

Previous versions of the Green Economy Report

Report 2020

Report 2017

Project team: Jannis Lambert, Oliver Lühr, Katharina Wilkskamp, Lukas Eiserbeck, Marieke Eckhart, Hanne Hagedorn

Last update: 14.11.2022

Do you have questions?

Your contact at Prognos

Jannis Lambert

Senior Project Manager

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Oliver Lühr

Partner, Head of Environmental, Circular Economy & Climate Change

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About us

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Prognos is one of the oldest economic research centres in Europe. Founded at the University of Basel, Prognos experts have been conducting research for a wide range of clients from the public and private sectors since 1959 – politically independent, scientifically sound.

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