The quality of the environment in the Netherlands has improved considerably since 1990. Emissions of harmful substances into the atmosphere, for example, have been reduced significantly as a result of measures taken to comply with European standards. Almost everywhere, the air quality meets the European requirements as cars become cleaner and emissions produced by manufacturing industry are reduced. Contaminated soil sites have been mapped, facilitating a systematic approach. Waste produced by industries and households is increasingly recycled. Although the water quality has improved marginally, a major effort will be required to comply with the European standards for 2027 as laid down in the Water Framework Directive.

The editors have selected the most important indicators. Together, they provide a picture of the state of the environment.



Farmland bird indicator, 1915-2020

Indicator | 28 March 2022

Changes in agricultural practices have caused a significant decline in breeding birds typical of agricultural areas in the Netherlands, starting from the early 20th century.

Trend fauna - all species monitored - Living Planet Index Netherlands, 1990-2020

Indicator | 28 March 2022

The Living Planet Index of the Netherlands has increased with 5.1% since 1990. The trend has decreased over the past twelve years.

Ecosystem goods and services in the Netherlands, 2020

Indicator | 17 January 2022

Dutch society uses a variety of goods and services provided by ecosystems. Although Dutch ecosystems make a valuable contribution to meeting the need for the sustainable provision of goods and... more

Habitat defragmentation measures for infrastructure, 2018

Indicator | 11 November 2021

At the end of 2018, of the 176 ecological barriers identified and selected in the Multiyear Habitat Defragmentation Programme, 126 had been removed and 40 partly removed by taking mitigation... more

Landscape openness, 2017

Indicator | 10 November 2021

Despite the trend towards uniformity in the Dutch landscape, extremes in the degree of landscape openness can still be found. The most open areas are the large water bodies, the northern marine... more

The Environmental Data Compendium is a partnership of CBS, PBL, RIVM and WUR.