Managing Water and Climate Change in Europe and North America
Edited by Inger Weibust and James Meadowcroft
Chapter 8: Institutional strength, intergovernmental relations, and national climate policy coordination: Australia and Canada compared
The nature of climate change is such that no one state can solve the problem by itself, nor is any one state likely to incur the costs of emission mitigation without some assurance of comparable action by others (Olson 1965; Hardin 1968). This same dynamic is replicated in federal states: How can one attain joint objectives and coordinated actions from autonomous yet interdependent jurisdictions in the face of considerable incentives to defect? As of 2013, Canada has been unable to reach agreement on national objectives, policy mechanisms, or the allocation of costs between sources and Canadian provinces and has relied instead on uncoordinated, unilateral actions by the federal government and provinces. By contrast, in 2011 Australian jurisdictions agreed upon a coordinated plan, including national strategies and objectives on renewable energy, energy efficiency, adaptation and mitigation. How do we explain Australian success in achieving coordination, in contrast to Canadian failure over the same time period? While differences in political culture, geography, political economy and political leadership no doubt play a part, we suggest that the institutions of intergovernmental relations (IGR) in each country have had a significant effect on efforts to coordinate. Our objective is to explore whether there are meaningful differences in the institutions of IGR that create permissive or constraining conditions in these two countries. The chapter begins by situating our analysis within the literature on federalism, intergovernmental relations and multilevel governance.
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.