Sustainable & inclusive entrepreneurship


Rising sea levels, changing weather patterns and severe droughts: the climate crisis is one of the greatest global challenges of our time. The level of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere is higher today than at any point in the last 3 million years. It affects us all. And what affects us all, concerns us all.

With the Paris Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), we agreed to leave no one behind, keep global warming in check, ensure countries could build climate resilience, and bring financial flows in line with those goals. This unique global agenda steers the world in the direction we want to go.

To keep global warming within safe limits, science has made clear the world needs to set significantly higher ambitions. Bold action should be taken on the same scale as the crisis itself to ensure a sustainable planet for future generations. The necessary transitions will not be easy, but there is no alternative. The cost of inaction will simply be too high.

No country can rise to the challenge alone. To maximise impact, we need to work together. The choices we make in the coming years will resonate for decades.

Sustainable economic growth

Fortunately, ambitious climate action can go hand-in-hand with economic growth and job creation. Green investments will make our economies more resilient to future shocks and are the best way to create well-paid local jobs that boost economic growth. Taking concrete measures today has clear co-benefits like healthier cities, increased food security and innovative sustainable business opportunities.

This is why the climate agenda is a priority for the Dutch government. We aim to significantly reduce our own emissions and strive for climate neutrality in 2050. This is not an easy task, but we are pragmatic and determined, tackling this challenge in close cooperation with business and civil society. In the same spirit, we are ready to work in partnership with you to make the transition to a low-carbon, climate-resilient future and deliver on the Paris Agreement goals and the 2030 Agenda.


All sub-themes

Circular economy

The world is facing complex social and environmental challenges. The Netherlands strongly believes that a transition to a circular economy is key to achieving the SDGs. Current ways of production and consumption are not sustainable and with the current take-make-waste approach the planet is facing its boundaries. A change is needed.

Water and maritime

Water covers 70 per cent of the planet. It sustains and connects continents, cities and communities. The impact of climate change on our vital resources is huge. Rising sea levels, drought and increased extreme weather events are signs that we need to take urgent action. Only by working together can we ensure clean and safe water for all, and healthy and productive oceans.

Food security

Feeding the global population in a sustainable manner is one of our greatest challenges today. The expected global demand for food will double by 2050 because of combined effects of population growth, rising income and urbanisation. This requires us to rethink the way we produce our food and how we can increase supply, while minimising environment impact. 

Clean energy

Increasing demand on energy as the result of population growth and modern development is one of the factors accelerating climate change. This compels us to look at innovative and integrated ways to generate sustainable energy.

Smart mobility

With increasing rate of urbanisation, mobility and quality of life is becoming an urgent issue. The Dutch government works closely together with international business and research communities in developing innovative technologies to solve mobility, environmental and safety issues.

Smart cities

Across the world, cities are growing rapidly; around 70% of the world’s population is expected to live in cities by 2050 compared. At present that figure is 55%. The increase in urban population presents several urgent challenges, putting substantial strain on resources with life-threatening implications.