Architectures and Agency in the Caribbean
Controlling Resources, Governing Markets and Creating Political Conflicts
Dag Harald Claes
Benjamin K. Sovacool
Although adaptation projects are a growing and necessary part of responding to climate change, they can generate undesirable outcomes. Drawing from concepts in political economy, political ecology, justice theory, and critical development studies, this chapter describes four ways in which adaptation projects can produce unintended, adverse, or inequitable results. Enclosure refers to when adaptation projects transfer public assets, shift costs, or redistribute risk. Exclusion refers to when adaptation projects limit access to resources or marginalise particular stakeholders. Encroachment refers to when adaptation projects intrude upon land use areas with predefined roles or degrade the natural environment. Entrenchment refers to when projects aggravate the disempowerment of women and minorities, or worsen social conditions such as income inequality or violent conflict. In exploring these themes, the chapter touches upon numerous themes in International Political Economy scholarship, including critical development studies, neoliberalism and the corporatisation of public assets and goods, and normative approaches to IPE such as global justice and Marxism.
As an emerging economy, and part of the BRICS, one of the world’s prime clubs of emerging nations, Brazil is widely perceived as a pivotal country in the 21st century’s global political economy of energy. A front-runner of biofuels, championing renewables in transport and electricity generation, and an emerging player in the international oil economy, it epitomises the rapidly changing global energy landscape. Moreover, being a country of the ‘Global South’, Brazil finds itself at the forefront of a broader IPE power shift more generally. However, as this chapter argues, Brazil as an energy player remains undetermined when it comes to its domestic energy regime, which it is argued is by and large a function of non-linear domestic-level governance dynamics between the state and the market. This lack of consistency in the domestic energy policy regime prevents Brazil from fully reaping the benefits of a sizeable energy economy, considerable resource endowments and a relative absence of geopolitical disturbances.
This chapter provides an overview of how the threat of global climate change and the need to de-carbonise the global economy have created new energy research agendas within international political economy (IPE), but also with global energy policy (GEP). It reviews recent research in four environmentally oriented thematic clusters: (1) the emerging energy trilemma of securing energy supply, reducing energy poverty, and preventing dangerous climate change; (2) the optimal choice of policy instruments for de-carbonising global capitalism; (3) the financing of the low-carbon energy transition; and (4) the strengthening of the global architecture for energy governance. The questions and issues raised demonstrate the vitality of existing research and provide some pointers to important new themes arising.
Andreas Goldthau and Nick Sitter
Exploring the intersections between International Political Economy (IPE) and global public policy (GPP) in energy scholarship, this chapter argues that contemporary dynamics pertaining to global energy trade and security present a challenge for GPP and IPE. On the one hand, the GPP analysis of energy will need to take account of the IPE debates about geopolitics and power. IPE, in turn, is called to revisit the importance of public goods aspects such as transparency for analyses of global energy trade. The chapter identifies five themes in which it is imperative for IPE and GPP analyses to advance mutual scholarly recognition: the commercialisation of shale oil and gas; its consequence for state-level or international regulation and intervention in oil and gas markets; debates on whether the increased focus on security of supply in the USA, the EU and China (and security of demand in Russia) merits new national policies and international regimes; the kind of global rules that might be viable given the new constellations of power in the world of energy; and what kind of actors shape the future of the energy world.