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Implementing international environmental agreements in Russia

Implementing international environmental agreements in Russia

Geir Hønneland
Anne-Kristin Jørgensen
Copyright Date: 2003
Pages: 224
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  • Book Info
    Implementing international environmental agreements in Russia
    Book Description:

    This exciting book is the first systematic study of how international environmental agreements are transformed into political action in Russia. Using three illuminating case studies on the implementation process in the fields of fisheries management, nuclear safety and air pollution control, this book fills an important gap in existing literature. While the focus in current social science debate on international environmental regimes is accumulating knowledge on 'implementing activities' at both national and international level, this book goes one step further and examines implementation at national and regional level. This topic is of great theoretical relevance to the study of environmental politics since some of the main sources of environmental degradation in Europe are to be found in the Russian Federation. It is also of relevance to the more general debate on contemporary Russian politics and offers valuable new material on regional politics in Russia. With its emphasis on the politics of environmental and resource management, it continues the description and discussion of political processes where most accounts of Russian politics tend to stop. This book will be invaluable for undergraduates, postgraduates and academics studying environmental politics and Russian politics at regional and national level.

    eISBN: 978-1-84779-027-9
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-v)
  3. List of figures
    (pp. vi-vi)
  4. List of tables
    (pp. vii-viii)
  5. Preface
    (pp. ix-x)
  6. List of abbreviations and acronyms
    (pp. xi-xii)
  7. 1 Introduction
    (pp. 1-24)

    How do Russian authorities go about implementing their international environmental obligations? This question, indicating the present book’s main topic of study, implies that implementation is here understood as the political processes taking place at the national, and possibly the sub-national, level after the conclusion of agreements or establishment of regimes at the international level. In the literature on international environmental agreements, processes at the domestic level are receiving increased attention.¹ After an initial main focus on regime formation,² the literature has in recent years come to be dominated by studies of regime effectiveness and the implementation, including processes at the...

  8. 2 Theoretical background
    (pp. 25-41)

    The last two decades of the twentieth century saw a remarkable increase in the breadth and depth of international environmental cooperation.¹ Several explanations have been offered to account for this trend, among them the growing transborder implications of national environmental problems and the combination of a general rise in international transactions and governmental involvement in environmental affairs at the national level (Hanf and Underdal 1998, pp. 149–51). Co-operative arrangements show great variation in their degree of formalism and ambition as well as in their geographic and functional scope. Typically, co-operation in a given issue area will initially be accompanied...

  9. 3 Northwestern Russia and the federative system
    (pp. 42-70)

    This chapter gives a presentation of Russia’s federative system and of the political and economic situation in the northwestern regions of the country. The objective of the first part of the chapter is to describe the overarching political structures of the Russian Federation, particularly those pertaining to the centre–region dimension, thus providing a backdrop to the discussion of various agencies’ involvement in the implementation of international environmental agreements. The second part of the chapter addresses the particular political and economic conditions under which implementation is supposed to take place in the case studies of the book.

    The Russian Federation,...

  10. 4 Fisheries management
    (pp. 71-104)

    The Barents Sea fish resources have for centuries constituted a main foundation for life in the northern parts of Fennoscandia. As follows from Chapter 1, these resources have since the mid-1970s been managed by a bilateral Norwegian–Russian regime, which in turn partly serves to spur the implementation of these countries’ obligations in accordance with global and regional fisheries agreements. The main objective of this chapter is to discuss how Russian authorities since the break-up of the Soviet Union have implemented their international obligations in the fisheries sector of the country’s northwestern region. How have federal and regional authorities coordinated...

  11. 5 Nuclear safety
    (pp. 105-144)

    As pointed out in Chapter 1, the threats posed by the nuclear complex of Northwestern Russia have attracted no little attention in recent years, not least from neighbouring Western countries. Thus, the issue of nuclear safety stands forth as the most highly profiled problem area among the three we have chosen to focus on in this study. It also differs from the other two by way of being far more heterogeneous in nature: some of the activities under scrutiny are of a civilian nature; others take place within the military sphere. Partly, the focus is on ‘actual’ polluting activities, such...

  12. 6 Air pollution control
    (pp. 145-162)

    Norilsk Nickel is one of Russia’s leading producers of non-ferrous and platinum-group metals and the country’s largest air polluter. Three of the company’s six subsidiaries are located on the Kola Peninsula: the Pechenganickel Combine at Zapolyarnyy and Nikel,¹ the Severonickel Combine at Monchegorsk and the Olenegorsk Mechanical Plant at Olenegorsk. Pechenganickel and Severonickel emit large quantities of sulphur dioxide (SO2) which causes considerable acid precipitation both on the Kola Peninsula and in the neighbouring Fenno-Scandinavian countries. This chapter reviews the problem of air pollution on the Kola Peninsula, the status of the area’s mining and metallurgical complex – with an...

  13. 7 Conclusions
    (pp. 163-183)

    We started this book by asking how Russian authorities have gone about implementing their international environmental commitments, noting that we were more interested in the political processes initiated with a view to achieving such implementation than in meticulously mapping the exact level of actual compliance in the various cases. This chapter sums up the major findings of our three case studies. Our primary focus is on the ‘implementation activities’ carried out in each case: what has been done to implement the various commitments, and how can the success or failure in each individual case best be explained? As a point...

  14. References
    (pp. 184-198)
  15. Index
    (pp. 199-204)