Germany is an export-oriented nation with a strong manufacturing industry and well established eco-innovation areas and markets. Since 2013 the Germany’s performance in the Eco-innovation Scoreboard has dropped by one place and ranks fourth in 2014-2015. This is mainly attributed to a downshift in the socio-economic and resource efficiency outcomes. Germany performs particularly well in the subcategories eco-innovation patents and exports of products from eco-industries.

With respect to a circular economy, Germany is characterised by very good waste infrastructures and recycling rates. The present focus on technical waste management and end-of-life measures is simultaneously signalling further demand for innovative waste instruments at the interface of material cycles and new business models. A first step was taken by introducing the Waste Prevention Programme in 2013. A strengthening of the regulatory framework and a better alignment of responsibilities, competencies and approaches towards a circular economy seem important for the increase of secondary input rates and a closing of the loops. The demand for high-tech and waste technologies is expected to remain high in the world and–as one of the market leaders– Germany has a strong standing in exporting innovative waste management solutions.

The German green tech sector is expected to further develop dynamically. The early implementation of the Renewables Energies Act (in 1991) and the introduction of the German Resource Efficiency Programme (ProgRess) in 2012 serve as important and drivers for energy and resource efficiency, eco-innovation and the energy transition in Germany.

The framework conditions for innovation are generally well developed and include both supply and demand-side instruments while there is a pronounced reliance on voluntary and informational approaches at the consumption side. An eco-innovation action plan is under development. Nevertheless, Germany will probably not meet its sustainable development strategy targets for raw material and energy productivity, energy consumption, biodiversity, land use, mobility and farming .

2015 Eco-innovation Scoreboard ranking and eco-innovation index composites for Germany




Ecological prefab houses

Labels: GermanyConstruction

germany_Ecological_resizedConstruction of new buildings and their interior design with renewable resources.

New construction, expansion or renovation of buildings can be carried out with renewable materials. Building with renewable resources is not only resource-efficient, but also needs less energy for the production and the subsequent management and maintenance. Simultaneously, ecological building materials contribute positively to the health of the residents.

Modern timber buildings are high-tech products that can be industrially prefabricated. In residential buildings as well as large timber-engineering constructions, building with wood and other renewable resources is a model of success. There are many architectural and design options for the implementation of environmentally and economically sustainable building concepts . A complete absence of a fossil heating and thus to additional greenhouse gases is now state of the art and can be implemented in any building project. Excellent thermal insulation up to the passive house standard is also possible with insulation materials made from renewable resources. Solar panels can also be used as a structural element in wooden facades and additional heat demand can be provided by pellet or local heating concepts based on biomass.

Wood panel design elements and a cradle-to-cradle certified insulation materials (Baufritz Biodämmung Hoiz) are used for the basis construction of the prefab houses. The complete life cycle of a building is considered for the design and architecture: from planning, design, through production and assembly, maintenance up to the recycling of building materials.

Barriers and Drivers

Currently, prefab ecological houses are comparably expensive. At the same time, renewable materials for the construction of houses suffer from limited acceptance in the market compared to concrete because of their image of being basically not suitable for the local climate and weather conditions.

In 2006, Bau-Fritz was honored within the Top 100 most innovative firms in Germany and has a leading position in the German house building industry. The company constantly invests in research and development in close cooperation with universities, research laboratories and federal ministries.

Economic Performance

Ecological construction is expected to be increasingly profitable in the coming years.

Social Performance

Bau-Fritz is a family run company, headed in its fourth generation by Dagmar Fritz-Kramer, who was awarded as Entrepreneur of the Year 2008 and has introduced a new generation of architecturally modern and individually designed ecological and healthy homes; 240 employees; currently the only EMAS III certified of the construction industry in Germany.

Environmental Impact

Bau-Fritz has received a number of awards in the field of environment. (

Further Information

Picture source: © Bau-Fritz GmbH & Co. KG

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