Governance for the Environment
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Governance for the Environment

A Comparative Analysis of Environmental Policy Integration

Edited by Alessandra Goria, Alessandra Sgobbi and Ingmar von Homeyer

The integration of environmental concerns into other policy areas is widely recognized as a key element to achieve sustainable development. It also represents a challenge for the environmental community, requiring not only a new approach to policy-making but also changes to existing policies and their implementation. This essential book presents a diverse set of perspectives and experiences on how to support sustainable development through the integration of environmental issues into various policy sectors.
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Chapter 3: Environmental Policy Integration at the Regional and Local Levels: Setting the Problem into Context

Michela Catenacci


Michela Catenacci 3.1 INTRODUCTION A great deal of the implementation and integration of environmental policies, often aimed at addressing global problems, takes place among sub-national actors at the local and regional level. According to the Network of Regional Governments for Sustainable Development, regions have a wide strategic role to play towards sustainable development and the protection of the environment. The sub-national or regional sphere of government is growing in importance worldwide and from the point of view of proximity, efficiency and spatial dimension, regions are considered to be strategically located as a necessary and crucial sphere of government for the development of policy and for implementation of sustainable development. Regions are perceived as an important level for policy implementation, which includes efforts for policy integration. Due to their proximity to the citizens and other important stakeholders, regions are able to tailor their action to people’s needs, and to strategically link different areas of policy. Regional governments are therefore best placed to make sustainable development a practical reality. The role local authorities fulfil within environmental policy, as the front line of the environmental concern, is an important aspect of integration. Local authorities can be approached as autonomous, decentralised authorities, but also as the executors of central environmental policy. The aim of the present chapter is to capture the main literature dealing with EPI at the regional and local level, including scientific articles, policy studies and sectoral case studies, carried out at the international, national and sub-national level. Since EPI is addressed...

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