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Fundamental Knowledge in Environmental Management: 

Fundamental Knowledge in Environmental Management Unit 13 Sustainability & International Relations Lecturer John Merson Part 1

International Environmental Regimes: 

International Environmental Regimes “ Environmental forces transcend borders and oceans to threaten directly the health prosperity and jobs of American citizens…Addressing natural resource issues is frequently critical to achieving political and economic stability and to pursuing our strategic goals around the world” US Secretary of State - Warren Christopher April 9 1996 There are now more than 180 environmental regimes or conventions now in operation. These increasingly set national environmental policy and provide the political context in which collective action by states is focused to solve international issues - form Climate Change to the flow of Rivers, from Biodiversity to the trade in endangered animals and rights to kill whales.

Issues in Global Environmental Governance: 

Issues in Global Environmental Governance The problem with the Nation State, sovereignty and the challenge of national security. Globalised economic institutions Rise of international NGO’s Redefinition of Citizen interests The concepts of Global Governance The theory of hegemonic power and international leadership. Bilateralism & Multilateralism The normative role of Regimes and Conventions

Political Players & Regime Formation: 

Political Players & Regime Formation Epistemic (Knowledge) Communities eg scientists and international scientific organisations, along with political activists linked to international NGO’s The media, and the ability of environmental activist groups and political lobbyists to use it to set the public debate and shape political agenda. The adoption of political positions with the debate shifting from the media to the party system with the normal political process. The formation of political coalitions of lead states to initiate international cooperation, and for opposed industrial groups to organise blocking processes. The impact of regime processes back on the states with requirement for ratification of agreements and the harmonising of national legislation.

Case Studies of Environmental Regimes: 

Case Studies of Environmental Regimes The Mediterranean Project. Mekong Commission Acid Rain in Europe and North America. CFC’s and the Montreal Protocols The Climate Change Convention and the Kyoto Protocols

The Mekong: 

The Mekong China is building seven major dams on the headwaters of the Mekong over next 15 years. This will impact of 60 million people whose livelihood is dependent on the river down stream. In Burma, Laos, Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia. Mekong is the largest source of freshwater fisheries in the world and supplies 60% of protein in Cambodia. The Chinese dams along with others downstream will change the rivers natural flow and destroy to Tongle Sap fish breeding grounds. The Chinese are also opening up the river for shipping by blasting rapids,.and hope to sell hydro electricity to its neighbours to compensate for loss of fisheries, and traditional river flow. The politics of the Mekong Commission.

International Regimes -Rivers Systems: 

International Regimes -Rivers Systems The Nile, depends on water flows from the Blue and White Nile. Egypt ‘s massive Aswan Dam was completed in 1970. However 85% of the water of the Nile flows through Ethiopia and the Sudan who also have their own plans for dams, hydro power and irrigation. The Jordan - Israel in the 1967 war bombed a Syrian Dam in the Golan Heights that took water from the Sea of Galilee. Further North Turkey plans to establish 13 dams on the headwater of the Tigris and Euphrates The Ganges- Headwaters flows from Nepal, through India to the bay of Bengal at its delta in Bangladesh. Flooding has increased to unprecedented levels in recent years. The Rhine - Switzerland, Germany, Holland. The source of much of the pollution for the North Sea and has damaged marine ecosystems.

CFC’s the Montreal Protocols: 

CFC’s the Montreal Protocols 1974 Roland & Molinar at the University of California at Irving first raise concerns about the possible impact of CFC’s on stratospheric ozone. An epistemic community of concerned international scientists begins to form. NGO’s and media raise concerns of interlinked phenomena - red rides in Antarctic and blind sheep in Patagonia. Concern raised at political level as to the connection with CFC’s Early eighties concern over UV light and skin cancer link brings in a wider constituency particularly in countries likely to be effected, Australia South America & the Nordic countries and Canada. 1980 Du Pont the worlds largest producer of CFC’s establishes a special research team to look into the possible links 1985 Mustafa Tolba, Director General of UNEP convened an international meetings in Vienna to address the issue but little commitment to take action by US or European states. 1986 Du Pont lobbies the US government on the scientific and commercial significance of the issue. An the meeting following at Montreal the US demands European agree to stop production and use or be denied access to US markets. Twenty four states sign up. 1990 London - India and China are brought into the convention with AID bribes.

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