Considerable quantities of bioavailable nitrogen (N) are released in the production of food and energy. The chemically bound nitrogen formed in this way amounts to 1.5 times the naturally formed amount, leading, to a number of environmental problems. The nitrogen compounds involved are mobile, reactive, and can be transformed into one another. A given N-containing molecule can, in fact, contribute successively to different environmental problems (through a cascade effect). In order to deal with all of these environmental reactive nitrogen (Nr) problems environmental policies are explored for synergies and integration. This is done by focusing on food production and energy use. There is already much policy related to many Nr problems at various levels: Dutch, European, global. Some of these policies are, or need to be, integrated with other policies. An integrated approach to nitrogen-related environmental problems will be more effective on all environmental and geopolitical (i.e. national, European and global) levels, and will therefore make for more efficient and cost-effective policy. The need for more coordinated policy for air quality, acidification and climate change is apparent. At the moment there is no policy or policy forum focusing on Nr as a whole. The importance of closing the N-cycle would merit a place on the agenda in the various geopolitical scales. This would bring integrated approaches to dealing with environmental Nr problems closer.The Netherlands has a high level of reactive nitrogen and associated environmental problems and also has some useful policy experience in addressing these problems. The Dutch experience is therefore reviewed and set in the context of recent research and policy developments at the European and global level.