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Mauerhofer V.,University of Vienna | Mauerhofer V.,University of Tokyo | Mauerhofer V.,PRIMAFF Policy Research Institute of the Ministry of Agriculture | Larssen C.,Roosevelt University
Land Use Policy | Year: 2016

This paper aims to provide judicial perspectives for Public Participation in Environmental Matters in East Asia based on the example of the European Union (EU). This is done both by means of an in-depth literature review which covers research papers, legislative documents and court decisions, and by means of a comparative analysis of court cases. The focus is on the implementation by the EU of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Aarhus Convention, which applies and details Principle 10 of the Rio Declaration. The assessment starts by providing an overview of several legislative documents issued by the EU for different policy sectors and briefly describes the contents regarding the implementation of the Aarhus Convention. Based thereon, the case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union is analysed. Seventeen judgements enforcing the Aarhus Convention for the EU level are described and their significance to a regional integration process is outlined. This provides valuable information to a region such as East Asia which plans to enter soon into a stronger regional integration process and which has the clear potential for improvement toward increased Public Participation in Environmental Matters based on the globally applicable Principle 10 of the Rio Declaration. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.

Huang B.,University of Shanghai for Science and Technology | Mauerhofer V.,University of Vienna | Mauerhofer V.,University of Tokyo | Mauerhofer V.,PRIMAFF Policy Research Institute of the Ministry of Agriculture | Geng Y.,Shanghai JiaoTong University
Journal of Cleaner Production | Year: 2015

Building sector accounts for a large percentage of the total national energy consumption in most of the countries, thus it is critical to formulate and implement appropriate energy saving policies in the building sector. This paper focuses on energy saving policies in the building sector by conducting a comparative study between Japan and China. The exiting Building Energy Saving (BES) policies, actual effectiveness of policy implementation and obstacles to the effective policy implementation are compared in sequence. Related policies are categorized into four groups: control and regulatory instruments; economic/market-based instruments; fiscal instruments and information and voluntary actions. Policy effect analysis identifies that BES policies have promoted building energy saving in both Japan and China. Obstacles comparison reveals that Japan and China shared many obstacles including high transaction costs and lack of applicable methodology. Compared with Japan, China is suffering more obstacles such as inefficient enforcement, insufficient levels of information and awareness and immature financial regulation system. Based on the previous findings, common suggestions for overcoming these obstacles of BES policies in Japan and China are presented, such as the accurate methods of baseline identification and emission accountings, innovative incentives, and more capacity building activities. Distinct suggestions for Japan and China are also added by considering their own situations so that both countries can further improve their BES policies. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.

Mauerhofer V.,University of Vienna | Mauerhofer V.,United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability | Mauerhofer V.,PRIMAFF Policy Research Institute of the Ministry of Agriculture | Kim R.E.,Griffith University | And 2 more authors.
Environmental Science and Policy | Year: 2015

What are the processes that shape implementation of multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) in multilevel governance? In an attempt to address this question, we move from a top-down view of implementation as compliance with international rules to viewing it as a dynamic process shaped by action at various levels. The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands offers an important context to understand the mechanisms that shape multilevel implementation outcomes. We examine Ramsar Convention implementation in Austria, Mexico, and the Republic of Korea in order to identify relevant processes that define multilevel implementation. These cases represent three different types of government, and shed light on the ways in which international law is implemented by respective governments. The Austrian case, a federal government, illustrates the ways in which subnational authorities (the provinces) are influenced by binding regional institutions (EU-rules) to create a more robust context for protection in terms of designation of Ramsar sites. The Mexican case, a semi-federal government, shows how spurred involvement by local NGOs, states, and scientists can result in significant expansion of efforts. The Korean case, a unitary government, demonstrates the ways in which aligning institutional interests (in this case local governments with national ministries) can lead to strong implementation. Analysis of these cases provides two robust findings and one deserving additional study. First, overlapping governance efforts where activity has ties with multiple regional and international biodiversity efforts tend to see cumulative implementation. Second, institutional and organizational complexity can provide opportunities for local actors to drive the implementation agenda through a mix of processes of coordination and contentious politics. A third, more tentative finding, is that multilevel funding sources can ease implementation. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.

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