The Effectiveness of European Union Environmental Policy

By Wyn Grant; Peter Newell et al. | Go to book overview

2
Business and Environmental
Interests

In both the formulation and implementation of policy, the institutions of the EU rely upon the respective expertise, public access and 'watchdog' capacity of NGOs and business groups. Each is central to EU goals in areas of economic and monetary union and environmental policy, such that their support is critical to effective policy outcomes. The first part of this chapter discusses the importance of business interests to the effectiveness of policy. The latter sections address the growing importance of the environmental movement in shaping the agenda of EU environmental policy.

There is no single business interest in relation to environmental policy which leads to demands for minimal regulation and the lowest possible standards of environmental protection. The impact of environmental policy differs by company, firm size and sector. Indeed, within a company, there may be a divergence of interest in relation to a particular environmental policy proposal. Coen (1998, p. 9) notes:

BP is a large producer of both ethanol and fossil fuels and each has a separate profit centre. However, when faced with the possibility of the EU environmental legislation that gave tax concessions to synthetic fuel, the firm had to decide whether to lobby for fossil fuels or environmentally friendlier ethanol base products. In this case, the planners favoured the traditional extraction sector as they had just negotiated a new exploration programme.

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The Effectiveness of European Union Environmental Policy
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • The Effectiveness of European Union Environmental Policy *
  • Contents v
  • Preface ix
  • Introduction 1
  • 1: Making Environmental Policy 7
  • 2: Business and Environmental Interests 43
  • 3: Implementation and Enforcement 66
  • 4: The Eu as an External Actor 89
  • 5: The Climate Change Policy of the European Union 120
  • 6: Water Policy 152
  • 7: Air Pollution 177
  • Conclusion 199
  • Bibliography 211
  • Index 231
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