Fundamental overhaul of global environmental governance needed, published in Science

A more effective environmental governance system needs to be instituted urgently, according to an article published in the journal Science

Dr Heike Schroeder and Professor Andrew Jordan of the University of East Anglia and Professor Peter Newell of the University of Sussex, all researchers in the Tyndall Centre, have contributed to the piece, which is a key input of the science community to the June 2012 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (“Rio+20”). The Tyndall authors were among 32 leading international experts who are affiliated with the international Earth System Governance Project.


The article argues that reducing the risk of potential global environmental disaster requires a “constitutional moment” comparable in scale and importance to the reform of international governance that followed World War II.  It calls for a UN Sustainable Development Council to better integrate sustainable development concerns across the UN system, an upgrading of the UN Environment Programme to a full-fledged UN agency and stronger consultative rights for representatives of civil society in global governance, based on mechanisms that balance differences in influence and resources among civil society representatives.

UEA is a research centre of the Earth System Governance project. The assessment underlying the article was mandated by the organizers of the large-scale science conference “Planet under Pressure”, to be held 26-29 March 2012 in London.


Dr Heike Schroeder, UEA School of International Development and the Tyndall Centre

Tel: +44 (0)1603 591036

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