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NGO Influence in the Implementation of the Kyoto Protocol: Compliance, Flexibility Mechanisms, and Sinks


  • Lars H. Gulbrandsen
  • Steinar Andresen


While most scholars agree that NGOs make a difference in global environmental politics, there has been little systematic work that looks at the actual influence NGOs have on policy outcomes. This paper looks to shed some new light on the question of NGO effectiveness through an evaluation of the role played by NGOs in climate negotiations. We begin with a brief sketch of different kinds of green NGOs, along with a review of the sorts of strategies and resources they employ. Next, we look to gauge the influence that NGOs have had on recent rounds of negotiations to do with compliance, flexibility mechanisms, and appropriate crediting rules for sinks. Our analysis is based on detailed interviews with members of some of the most prominent environmental NGOs involved in climate work. Finally, we suggest, based on our findings, some means by which NGOs may look to extend their influence in the development of the climate regime. Our analysis points to the crucial need for further "insider" capacity-that is, NGOs are likely to have the most far-reaching influence on future climate negotiations if they foster ways to work closely and collaboratively with key negotiators and governments. Copyright (c) 2004 Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Suggested Citation

  • Lars H. Gulbrandsen & Steinar Andresen, 2004. "NGO Influence in the Implementation of the Kyoto Protocol: Compliance, Flexibility Mechanisms, and Sinks," Global Environmental Politics, MIT Press, vol. 4(4), pages 54-75, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:glenvp:v:4:y:2004:i:4:p:54-75

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    Cited by:

    1. Tobias Böhmelt & Carola Betzold, 2013. "The impact of environmental interest groups in international negotiations: Do ENGOs induce stronger environmental commitments?," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 13(2), pages 127-151, May.
    2. Katharina Rietig, 2014. "‘Neutral’ experts? How input of scientific expertise matters in international environmental negotiations," Policy Sciences, Springer;Society of Policy Sciences, vol. 47(2), pages 141-160, June.
    3. Katharina Rietig, 2011. "The influence of academics as insidernongovernmental actors in the Post-Kyoto Protocol Climate Change Negotiations: a matter of timing, network and policyentrepreneurial capabilities," GRI Working Papers 58, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment.
    4. Christopher Pallas & Johannes Urpelainen, 2012. "NGO monitoring and the legitimacy of international cooperation: A strategic analysis," The Review of International Organizations, Springer, vol. 7(1), pages 1-32, March.
    5. Larson, Donald F. & Dinar, Ariel & Blankespoor, Brian, 2012. "Aligning climate change mitigation and agricultural policies in Eastern Europe and Central Asia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6080, The World Bank.
    6. Tobias Böhmelt, 2013. "A closer look at the information provision rationale: Civil society participation in states’ delegations at the UNFCCC," The Review of International Organizations, Springer, vol. 8(1), pages 55-80, March.
    7. Katharina Rietig, 2011. "Public pressure versus lobbying � how do Environmental NGOs matter most in climate negotiations?," GRI Working Papers 70, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment.
    8. Wegge, Njord, 2015. "The emerging politics of the Arctic Ocean. Future management of the living marine resources," Marine Policy, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 331-338.
    9. repec:spr:revint:v:12:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s11558-016-9262-z is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Christopher Marcoux & Johannes Urpelainen, 2013. "Non-compliance by design: Moribund hard law in international institutions," The Review of International Organizations, Springer, vol. 8(2), pages 163-191, June.
    11. Fabien Prieur & Benteng Zou, 2017. "On the impact of indirect competition for political influence on environmental policy," CREA Discussion Paper Series 17-16, Center for Research in Economic Analysis, University of Luxembourg.
    12. Larson, Donald F. & Breustedt, Gunnar, 2007. "Will markets direct investments under the Kyoto Protocol ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4131, The World Bank.

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