Environmental Policy and Politics in the European Union
In recent decades, the European Union has developed one of the world's most stringent sets of environmental policies. These policies cover not only the traditional areas of environmental concern, such as fighting pollution and protecting natural resources, but also increasingly salient issues like GMOs and climate change, which affect day-to-day patterns of production and consumption. As with all areas of policy making within the EU, the creation of environmental policy relies on the co-operation of many political actors - EU institutions, national authorities and interest groups - all with widely differing agendas. Studying how the dynamics between these political actors result in specific environmental policies reveals much about the wider dynamics at play in the EU as a whole. This important new text analyses the European Union's environmental policy, tracing how it has evolved to become today one of its largest fields of action. Using state-of-the-art analysis, it discusses in depth the relationship between policies and the political processes that shape them, and looks at how environmental policies are increasingly having a major impact on other policy fields, including energy, agriculture and transport. This book considers in detail the EU's policies in both traditional and 'new' environmental subdomains, including coverage of recent developments in terms of their content, approach and effectiveness. Throughout this clear and readable introduction to EU environmental policy, the authors emphasize the interdependence between what happens in the EU and at the global level. By establishing EU policies within the wider international context, they pay particular attention to the EU's role in global environmental governance, especially in relation to climate change.