Browsing by Author "MacDonald, Donald"
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- ItemClimate change policy 101(2011) MacDonald, DonaldSimilar to other policy issues, climate change policy proceeds in a cyclical fashion that proceeds from agenda setting, to policy development, to implementation, and finally to monitoring and review. Agenda setting involves politicians becoming convinced, usually by the science but also by politics and public opinion, that the climate issue deserves a policy response. Policy development involves a great deal of economic and policy option assessments that are winnowed down to a few options that may have “political traction” (i.e. those politicians think might succeed). Policy implementation involves turning policies into law and regulations that industry and individuals will act upon. Policy review, especially monitoring outcomes, is perhaps the most important phase, and for the climate change issue, the ongoing conclusion to date seems to be that more needs to be done, leading to the policy cycle starting over again. But there are also disturbing signs that this “top-down” approach is no longer working, and more “bottom-up” approaches, linked to the energy sector and clean technology, may become important new forces in forging action on climate change.
- ItemClimate change strategies 101(2013) MacDonald, DonaldThe development of climate change action plans and strategies is usually done via the policy cycle during the first half of a government’s term. This short-term political process is at odds with the longer-term climate change issue that requires a consistent and sustained effort. Consequently, this often leads to conflicting and ever changing climate plans and strategies that often do not fully move to implementation. Several key strategic questions need to be considered at the policy agenda setting stage. Examples of these questions include: the real impetus for developing the plan, political will to take on policy development at a particular time, the degree of intention to actually implement it, and depth of target versus costs to the economy. The developmental stage of climate plans in Canada has historically involved five key components (with many variations): 1) background policy and scientific work; 2) consultation process; 3) economic/policy analysis and target setting; 4) building political support for a greenhouse gas target and policy package to meet the target; and 5) refinement and final political approval. Businesses are also responding by developing climate change strategies to either hedge their risk of being regulated, hedge their risk related to severe weather events, and/or to take advantage of climate business opportunities.