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2021 | Buch

Environmental Governance and Greening Fiscal Policy

Government Accountability for Environmental Stewardship

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Über dieses Buch

This book addresses the increasingly urgent question: How can governments be made more accountable for the quality of their environmental stewardship?

It explores:

Enhanced national State of the Environment reporting and integration of environmental outcomes in key national indicators.Mainstreaming environmental goals, targets, and risks by integrating them in fiscal policy and the annual budget—a government’s most important policy instrument.Promoting sustainability by progressively exposing and eliminating harmful tax and expenditure policies, putting a price on pollution, and providing environmental public goods.Civil society environmental monitoring.

The book combines in-depth assessment of the latest climate/green budgeting literature and country practices with discussion of how to implement green fiscal policies. The framework is deliberately ambitious given the severity, scale, and urgency of climate change and biodiversity loss.

The book will be of interest to ministry of finance, budget, and planning officials, to environment sector agencies, oversight institutions, international organizations, civil society organizations, and to academics and students in the fields of environmental studies, development studies, economics, public finance, and public policy.

Inhaltsverzeichnis

Frontmatter
Chapter 1. Introduction: The Twin Environmental Crises and Wishful Thinking
Abstract
Current approaches to environmental stewardship are demonstrably failing given existential threats of climate change and biodiversity loss. This book addresses the urgent question: how can governments be made more accountable for their environmental stewardship? It proposes three inter-related areas for action: (i) national State of the Environment reporting; (ii) expanded environmental target setting, integration in a dashboard of key national indicators, and reporting; and (iii) using a government’s most important policy statement and its most powerful strategy and policy integration instrument—fiscal policy and the annual budget cycle—to mainstream environmental goals, progressively eliminate harmful tax and expenditures policies, put a price on pollution, promote sustainable development, and provide environmental public goods. The Introduction sets out a high-level theory of change, discusses the roles of government, markets, and civil society, and presents an overview of the book.
Murray Petrie
Chapter 2. Reporting on the State of the Environment
Abstract
Recognized international frameworks for reporting on the state of the environment are outlined, including the Drivers-Pressures-State-Impact-Response (DPSIR) model. It is argued that national-level environmental reporting is the critical level for accountability given state sovereignty over environmental policy. Country practices in national environmental reporting are described. Weaknesses in the DPSIR model and in country practices are identified. Proposals are put forward to strengthen national state of environment reporting, including the incorporation of forward-looking information on risks and tipping points with respect to the most critically important indicators, strengthening technical independence from the government of the day, a requirement for government to respond to each report, aligning the timing of reports as feasible with the national electoral cycle, and investments in data monitoring, reporting and capacity development.
Murray Petrie
Chapter 3. Mainstreaming Environmental Stewardship in Government Strategy and Policy
Abstract
GDP growth remains unduly dominant in the highest-level statements of government strategy and policy objectives although there is increasing recognition of the need to incorporate key physical environmental outcomes in a dashboard of core indicators of social and economic progress. Comparing environmental governance with that of fiscal and monetary policy reveals a lack of requirements to set and report against time-bound environmental targets for key parameters (climate change aside). Furthermore, if environmental goals and targets are to have an impact, they need to be incorporated in government strategy and in the government’s most powerful cross-sector policy integration tool: fiscal policy and the annual budget cycle.
Murray Petrie
Chapter 4. The Evolution of Green Budgeting
Abstract
The terms climate budgeting, green budgeting, and green fiscal policy are defined and illustrated, together with key environmental concepts and taxonomies. The two-way interactions between fiscal policies and the natural environment are described—the impacts on all environmental domains of taxation and spending, and the fiscal costs and risks from environmental degradation. Some quantitative evidence of environmental and fiscal impacts is cited. The evolution over the last decade of climate budgeting and green budgeting is described together with the associated development of technical guidance on these important practices. A wide range of developing, middle income, and advanced country practices are described including the latest cutting-edge practices. The chapter concludes with assessments of how green the initial COVID-19 pandemic responses by major countries have been.
Murray Petrie
Chapter 5. Environmental Governance and the Greening of Fiscal Policy
Abstract
A comprehensive framework is put forward for environmental governance and the greening of fiscal policy. The framework combines national State of Environment Reporting, incorporation of the highest priority environmental indicators and targets in key national indicators, and their mainstreaming through integration in fiscal policy and the annual budget cycle. The key components of green fiscal policy are identified together with suggested annual green budget reports and periodic green fiscal reports. This is followed by discussion of the implementation of the greening of fiscal policy, covering six principles of green fiscal policy; preconditions for implementation; and an extensive discussion of priority entry points for greening fiscal policy depending on country circumstances.
Murray Petrie
Chapter 6. The Role of Civil Society in Promoting Government Accountability for Environmental Stewardship
Abstract
Citizens and CSOs are important agents of good governance and sustainable development. They play diverse roles in holding governments to account for their environmental stewardship through using invited spaces, and by initiating civic action. International norms on public access to information and participation and country examples of civic environmental activism are described. Two new potential green civil society instruments are put forward: an annual Green Guide to the Budget to highlight government performance on environmental stewardship and the environmental impacts of fiscal policies; and a new Environmental Governance Index to provide a cross-country ranking of the quality of environmental governance.
Murray Petrie
Chapter 7. The Way Forward
Abstract
Will we experience further escalating environmental degradation and catastrophe, or can our current and new forms of governance restore environmental sustainability? This chapter revisits the need for new forms of governance and the associated need for changes in government and voter behavior to achieve them. The main arguments in the book are summarized and ten key takeaways distilled on what needs to be done to make governments more accountable for their stewardship of the natural environment.
Murray Petrie
Backmatter
Metadaten
Titel
Environmental Governance and Greening Fiscal Policy
verfasst von
Murray Petrie
Copyright-Jahr
2021
Electronic ISBN
978-3-030-83796-9
Print ISBN
978-3-030-83795-2
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-83796-9