Environmental Governance and Decentralisation
Show Less

Environmental Governance and Decentralisation

Edited by Albert Breton, Giorgio Brosio, Silvana Dalmazzone and Giovanna Garrone

This book examines how different countries define and address environmental issues, specifically in relation to intergovernmental relations: the creation of institutions, the assignment of powers, and the success of alternative solutions. It also investigates whether a systemic view of the environment has influenced the policy-making process. The broad perspective adopted includes a detailed analysis of seventeen countries in six continents by scholars from a range of disciplines – economics, political science, environmental science and law – thus producing novel material that moves away from the conventional treatment of decentralisation and the environment in economic literature.
Buy Book in Print
Show Summary Details
You do not have access to this content

Chapter 2: Australia: Preserving Biodiversity and Managing Water Resources

Jeffrey D. Petchey


Jeffrey D. Petchey 1. INTRODUCTION Australia is a vast, dry continent with a fragile ecology. European settlement, with the associated farming and economic practices, is only two hundred years old, yet the landscape has changed beyond recognition from the one which greeted the first Europeans. Much of this change has been for the worse. Australia now faces environmental challenges, mainly to do with threats to biodiversity (for example the threatened extinction of many endangered native species) and management of a limited water supply in the face of a growing population, partly due to continued immigration. The aim of this chapter is to provide a selective analysis of how Australia is responding to these challenges and to draw out implications for environmental policy in regional unions of States such as the European Union (EU). The outline is as follows. Section 2 provides an overview of the assignment of environmental policy, constitutionally, and in practice. The discussion here examines trends in centralisation and inter-governmental cooperation. It also examines why Australia has adopted a cooperative approach to environmental issues. Section 3 examines international assessment of Australia’s environmental performance using the Environmental Sustainability Index (ESI) published by the Yale Centre for Environmental Law. Here the conclusions are that Australia scores very highly overall on environmental issues, certainly much higher than major European countries such as France, Germany, the UK and Italy, but has a particular problem with biodiversity and water supply. These results are well known in Australia and have been the focus...

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information

or login to access all content.