Policies that increase the reliance of a water-supply organization (WSO) on water conservation have economic and environmental benefits, but some cities and WSOs have been reluctant to pursue such policies to their full extent. Previous research has identified barriers such as WSOs’ concerns with revenue loss and consumers’ concerns with changes in lifestyle. Based on interviews in four US cities with representatives of local business, government, water supply, environmental and other organizations, our research shows how the reluctance to pursue water conservation policies (WCPs) to their fullest extent is also related to more general political factors. We bring together growth coalition theory and sociotechnical transition theory to show how opposition varies by type of water conservation policy, including the distinction between mandates and flexible policies and between end-use policies and infrastructure policies. This approach shows how the transition to higher levels of water conservation is a political process, and we argue that understanding both the political process and the political meanings of different WCPs provides insights into strategies and their potential efficacy.
- IWA Publishing
- The politics of water conservation: identifying and overcoming ...
Power and policy in floodplain management, drawing on research in Alberta, Canada
Floodplain management policy (FMP) implementation and change involve a range of actors and opportunities for power to be exercised. Considering four different conceptualizations of power, this paper explores the actors and instances where power emerges in FMP implementation and change, using Alberta, Canada, as our focus. We consider which conceptualization is most reflective of the Alberta context. We conclude that all four views of behaviour are relevant here, with some power dynamics between actors more...
Science for Environment Policy
Potentially toxic elements in European soils mapped by researchers.A new study has mapped levels of chemical elements found in Europe a aoricultTal soils. In most places, unusually high concentrations are linked t geology, such as high levels of arsenic in the Massif Central in France. Huma.. activity is to blame in some small areas, for example high concentrations of mercury were found near London and Paris. Abnormal concentrations, both too low and too high, could pose an environmental risk. This new...
Science for Environment Policy
The economic impact of climate change on European agricultureA new study has estimated how changes to climate might affect the value of European farmland. Based on data for over 41 000 farms, the results suggest that their economic value could drop by up to 32%, depending on the climate scenario considered- Farms in southern Europe are particularly sensitive to climate change and could suffer value losses of up to 9% per 1 °C rise. The researchers say policy, on water and land use, for example, will be...
Federal agencies announce revision to modernize Federal Policy for the protection of human subjects
On January 19, 2017, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), together with a host of other federal agencies, announced revisions via a final rule to modernize, strengthen, and make more effective the Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects that was originally promulgated as a Common Rule in 1991. 82 Fed. Reg. 7151. The Federal Register publication states that this final rule is intended to “better protect human subjects involved in research, while facilitating valuable research and...
Beliefs, Politics, and Environmental Policy
IntroductionMany of us who work on environmental issues have faced the challenge of conveying their importance to nonspecialists. Perhaps we have found ourselves defending the robustness of climate science to a contrarian uncle, or extolling the importance of biodiversity to a dubious aunt. Our relations and friends are often educated people, skilled in their own professions, who have formed strong opinions about the science underlying environmental problems, their potential consequences for their own lives, and...