From the Bottom Up: Local and Subnational Climate Change Politics

  • Citation: Schreurs, Miranda A. "From the bottom up local and subnational climate change politics." The Journal of Environment & Development 17.4 (2008): 343-355.
    • Topics:
    • Transnational Issues
    • Keywords:
    • global climate change politics
    • levels of government

This article introduces this special issue that deals with subnational (and, in the case of the European Union, sub-supranational) global climate change politics. While recognizing the limitations that face local governments, the article discusses the importance of focusing more attention on climate policies and programs of state (prefectural, provincial), regional, metropolitan, and local levels of government, where implementation of national climate change policies and programs must occur. Four cases are examined in detail: California within the United States, Germany within the European Union, prefectures and some municipalities (Tokyo and Kyoto) within Japan, and provinces and prefectures within China. The reasons why local governments sometimes choose to act as agenda setters are considered, the ways local governments can influence national government policies are discussed, the role of international networks in diffusing policy ideas among local governments is introduced, and the obstacles to affecting deep change at the local level are considered.

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