Regional convergence in environmental policy arrangements : A transformation towards regional environmental governance for West and Central African ports?
Barnes-Dabban, Harry ; Koppen, C.S.A. van; Tatenhove, Jan P.M. van - \ 2018
Ocean & Coastal Management 163 (2018). - ISSN 0964-5691 - p. 151 - 161.
Multiple level governance - Policy arrangements - Port environmental policy - Regional convergence - West and Central African ports
Environmental policy-making in West and Central Africa, with implications for the region's ports, is usually dominated by state actors that also represent the nation-states at regional inter-governmental co-operation. The ports share common and transboundary environmental problems, but fall under diverse political and decentralisation systems. Also, in spite of regional inter-governmental co-operation there is disagreement between regional environmental policies and those for the ports at sub-national level. The port authorities are largely absent in environmental negotiations with outcomes ignoring their contributions. However, institutional reform of the ports from the year 2000 onwards has seen the port authorities gaining greater autonomy as public non-state actors and beginning to involve in environmental policy-making. This paper seeks to understand how environmental policy-making and governance is transforming in West and Central African ports. By combining the policy arrangement approach, the main analytical tool for the paper, with the concept of regional convergence, interaction processes among key actors involved in port environmental policy-making in West and Central Africa are studied. The study finds a developing innovation of joint environmental policy-making arrangement in which West and Central African port authorities, from sub-national level, are engaging directly with regional inter-governmental and Environmental Non-Governmental Organisation actors. The developing innovation by-passes institutionalised state-led environmental policy-making arrangements, with the potential for transforming environmental governance of West and Central African ports. It is concluded that non-state actors, when given flexible manoeuvring, can be innovative in overcoming diverse statist political dynamics in dealing coherently with transboundary environmental issues within a territorial region. However, state actors remain key as linking pins in transboundary environmental policy and governance.
The influence of the Regional Coordinating Unit of the Abidjan Convention : implementing multilateral environmental agreements to prevent shipping pollution in West and Central Africa
Barnes-Dabban, Harry ; Karlsson-Vinkhuyzen, Sylvia - \ 2018
International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics 18 (2018)4. - ISSN 1567-9764 - p. 469 - 489.
Implementing multilateral environmental agreements - Influence of international bureaucracies - Regional Coordinating Unit of the Abidjan Convention - Shipping pollution prevention - West and Central African ports
The Regional Coordinating Unit of the Convention for Co-operation in the Protection and Development of the Marine and Coastal Environment for West and Central Africa (the Abidjan Convention) has under its wings several multilateral environmental agreements including those addressing shipping pollution. Shipping, potentially, has negative impacts on marine fauna and flora and air quality, with implications for public health. The Regional Coordinating Unit seeks to strengthen implementation of the Abidjan Convention by party-states through co-operation with state actors using various pathways based on its internal resources and competencies but the Unit is also starting to explore engagement with potential non-state actors. The ability of the Unit to exert influence on implementation is constrained by domestic politico-administrative institutions. This paper seeks to understand the influence of the Regional Coordinating Unit on the implementation of the Abidjan Convention in the field of shipping pollution. It uses three theoretical perspectives for the analysis: the influence of international environmental bureaucracies, domestic regulatory-politics and transnational governance. The paper shows how these theories are complementary because the influence of international bureaucracies such as the Regional Coordinating Unit cannot be adequately understood through factors internal to their organisation alone but needs to be analysed in relation also to external factors, both domestic politico-institutional ones in states that international bureaucracies work with, and the role of relevant non-state actors in the implementation of multilateral environmental agreements. It is concluded that, although influence cannot be measured directly, it is likely that Regional Coordinating Unit’s influence through its autonomy-centred efforts are quiet strong but negatively constrained by the traditional state-centric responsibility for implementation of international legal instruments where domestic regulatory-politics lack sufficient political will and support from and engagement with non-state actors.