Nature Outlook 2010-2040


Each nature perspective in the Nature Outlook meets one of the policy objectives. However, challenges also remain or even become greater in each of the perspectives. The nature perspectives, therefore, would all have a major impact on society (see table).
Table showing the effects of the four nature perspectives


The nature perspective of Vital Nature will result in a biodiversity gain. This is logical, given that this is what the perspective is designed to achieve. It is, therefore, all the more remarkable that the nature perspective of Functional Nature will also result in considerable biodiversity gains. Under this perspective, nature of international importance will also benefit, as the goal is to strengthen coastal, dune and wetland nature.

A combination of these two nature perspectives could perhaps yield a large amount of internationally significant biodiversity with more room for sustainable use. This approach would then provide for sustainable use with a separation of functions to benefit nature where necessary. Such a combination would be possible both on land and at sea. Costs will be high, mainly because of the large amount of space required.

Perception and appreciation

The nature perspective of Experiential Nature would solve most of the shortage of green surroundings for walking and cycling. This shortage is mainly felt in the Randstad area. Outside the cities, existing nature areas and historical landscapes would become even more attractive for people to experience. The contribution made by Vital Nature to recreational green surroundings in and close to cities is small, mainly because the large connected areas are created further away from cities. The consequence of Tailored Nature may be that unbridled privatisation of nature areas causes nature to become less accessible for people in lower income groups, as sites become fenced off and entry fees are charged.

Sustainable use

The nature perspective of Functional Nature clearly shows that sustainable use is quite possible. The other nature perspectives also offer avenues for combinations with sustainable use. Under Vital Nature, for example, protected areas can be designated as hatcheries for fish, which will benefit fisheries outside the protected areas. The nature perspectives differ in terms of the possible combinations and the size of the contribution.

Costs and savings

Economic benefits can be achieved in the short term under the nature perspective of Tailored Nature. For example, by construction development on the edges of nature areas or through agricultural scale up.
The income from this will go to businesses in the private sector. If revenues (or some of them) were to be used for the greater collective benefit, such as for developing nature or encouraging sustainable use of ecosystem services, this could also contribute to the realisation of other objectives. Site managers could, for example, use revenues from the sale and exploitation of smaller nature areas in the vicinity of cities for the management and development of key nature sites with more biodiversity.

The Nature Outlook is a statutory product of the PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency with cooperation from Wageningen UR.