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Lecture 22

POLI 451 Lecture Notes - Lecture 22: Maastricht Treaty, Polluter Pays Principle, Execution Unit


Department
Political Science
Course Code
POLI 451
Professor
Sven- Oliver Proksch
Lecture
22

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Treaty of Rome
no reference to the environment
env. and common market
fear that MS could use env. regulation to discriminate against products imported from other MS
race to the bottom?
countries with high env. standards may lose competitiveness to others with laxer
regulations
env. pollution is a cross-border issue
history
no legal basis for this
Comm. drafted “Env. Action Programs” (preventative principle, polluter pays principle)
rely on other treaty articles
approximation of laws affecting the common market
“catch-all” article allowing action to be taken in areas not mentioned in Treaty but where
it was deemed necessary for the achievement of the Community objectives
treaty change
single european act: env. protection formally part of competences of EU
two voting rules
env. leg. connected to common market: QMV in Council, involvement of EP
not connected to common market: Unanimity in Council, no involvement of EP
role of the Comm. in early days
supranational policy entrepreneur
e.g. European-wide wildlife and nature conservation directive
but sometimes torn b/w eco. and env. logic
example: Danish Bottle Case
Danish leg. requiring all soft drink and beer to be in pre-approved reusable containers
Comm. considered this a trade barrier
policy introduced for env. reasons protects nat’l producers from import competition
Comm. took Denmark to the ECJ
ECJ rules in favour of Denmark
env. protection could justify measures of distorted trade
env. on equal footing with common market
recent development
EP acquired veto right over env. leg. in Maastricht Treaty
the implementation deficit
comm. initiates most infringement procedures related to the env. (in 2013, 30% of all new
infringements)
combating climate change
“cap and trade”
EU Carbon Emissions
Trading Scheme
launched in 2005
covers about 40% of EU’s Carbon emissions
about 8% reduction since 2005
comm. responsible fro handing out allowances which are then traded
initial problems of oversupply, crisis
largest trading scheme worldwide
existing explanations
wealth and post materialist values
increases in wealth—> spread of post materialist values—> public support for env.
protection—> propensity to ratify int’l env. treaties
can explain differences b/w developing and developed countries, but cannot between US
and EU
would predict that US remains env. leader
"world society"
nat’l policy preferences shaped by “world env. regime” (not by domestic interests)
states with densest linkages to world soc. ratify more env. treaties
cannot explain difference b/w US and EU
both embedded deeply in world soc.
eco. interests
public perceptions of nation’s env. and eco. interests affect stance on int’l env.
agreements
BUT: US strongest proponent of agreement to combat ozone depletion despite high
abatement costs
whereas UK, Fr., Ger., It. were reluctant participants)
multilateralism
growing unilateralism in US (e.g. ICC, Land Mine Treaty, CNTBT), multilateralism in the
EU
explains US willingness not to support multilateralism env. agreements, but growing
unilateralism does not by itself explain recent US env. policy (absence of even unilateral
measures)
alternative explanation: regulatory politics approach
domestic pol.
pol. strength of env. interests +
regulatory competition
eco. interests of domestic producers =
level of support for int’l agreements
domestic pol. in the US
1960-1990 influence of advocates of env. regulation
ex.: Nat’l env. policy act, clean air act, endangered species act, ozone-depleition chemicals
domestic pol. int he EU
mass env. movements
increased salience
acid rain, Chernobyl, ozone layer
electoral institutions allowed formation of Green pol. parties (as opposed to in the US)
parl. representation and even gov’t participation of Green parties
env. standards in MS
potential non-tariff barriers in single market
goal
harmonize env. regulation in EU
increasing institutional role for the EP
regulatory competition
more stringent rules in US up to 1990, in the EU since 1990
although many European gov’ts might have been reluctant to adopt substantive commitments in
the 1970s, by the 1990s they would have been eager to export stringent EU env. policies
example: Climate Change
intersection of domestic pol. and regulatory competition has encouraged the EU to take on a
leadership role
as awareness of the threat posed by climate change mounted during the 1990s, domestic pol.
pressure for action to curb greenhouse gases mounted in Europe
given that voters would in any case demand EU action on climate change, it was preferable to
promote action at int’l level that would force EU competitors to undertake costly measures as
well
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