Pollution prevention and industrial transformation Evoking structural changes within companies

Theo J.N.M. De Bruijn, Peter S. Hofman

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


Pollution prevention has developed as an attractive method for improving the environmental performance of companies. Often the concept is promoted in a project format, for instance in a regional perspective or for a specific sector of industry. This article analyzes the contribution of pollution prevention projects to the transformation of industry. Different formats that have been carried out in the Netherlands during the last 8 years are evaluated in terms of direct results (implemented measures and their effects) and long-term effects. The main issue in this article is what contribution pollution prevention has in evoking structural changes towards more sustainable behavior in companies. The general conclusion is that pollution prevention is at least potentially a powerful and interesting concept. The current formats used to promote pollution prevention show some serious deficits, especially in failing to elicit a learning process within participating companies. The trend towards the use of quickscans as a prevention method is worrying in this respect. Some recommendations are given to improve future projects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-223
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Environmental policy
  • Industrial transformation
  • Pollution prevention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • General Environmental Science
  • Strategy and Management
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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