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Sustainable Alliances at Work

By Niels Lameijer on Jan 10, 2010 at 12:00 AM in Corporate Coaching Blog, Sustainable Alliances and Leadership

Sustainable Alliance at work

Today an interesting story hit on the Dutch National News. It's a prime example of how a company seeking for expansion and opposing environmentalist find common ground (with some help from a judge).


An excerpt from the press release, translate by NJL.

Leisure Park "De Efteling" in the Netherlands welcomed their first guests today in their new vacation home park "Bosrijk". For "De Efteling" their dream, year-round opening hours, came another step closer to realization.

No less than six year ago, angry environmentalists chained themselves to trees, build tree houses and dug tunnels on the land "Bosrijk" was planned to arise. Only when the Council of State blocked the first expansion plans of "De Efteling's'"new park, nine months after the first tunnel was inhabited, the environmentalists left their homes in the forest.

"De Efteling" had plans to build a grand park with room for about 3500 beds, but the plans were not well liked by the different environmental organizations to say the least.

In a joint effort the environmentalists sued the development and they were successful, plans were denied and the "De Efteling"-company had to get back to the drawing board.

Only when the judge ordered the environmentalists and the "De Efteling" to get around the negotiating table together, the project started to move further again.

"It took some time before mutual trust was reinstalled" one of the participants shared, "However in the end we could talk on a very constructive level. And the end result is a very good plan!"


By getting all parties involved around the table the reactive and powerful "fighting against" energy from both "sides" was harnessed and transformed into inspired, collaborative action that moved towards mutual goal achievement. This transformation feeds a new sustainable future, a future in which government, communities, environmentalists, and the corporate world join forces to create global, solution-focused partnerships. Sustainable Alliances at work!

Of course I can imagine you are curious about the end result. Well "De Efteling" made a plan for 1150 beds, create 160% of nature compensation and they implemented state of the art green-building and management concepts conserving drinking water and energy. And example tourist attraction that both the company and the environmentalist are proud of.

Interested in the Dutch version of the new story? Please click here.