This book is a systematic study that considers how international environmental agreements are transformed into political action in Russia, using three case studies on the implementation process in the fields of fisheries management, nuclear safety, and air pollution control. It develops the social science debate on international environmental regimes and ‘implementing activities’ at both national and international level to include regional considerations.
This chapter gives a preliminary introduction to the research questions addressed in the book. It also provides a brief overview of the international arrangements that are of most relevance to fisheries management, nuclear safety, and air pollution control in Northwestern Russia.
This chapter provides more detail on the theoretical debate about the implementation of international environmental agreements, leading up to a more individualised approach to the issues under investigation here. The first section seeks to place the implementation literature in a wider theoretical context, asking how the two major theoretical approaches to international relations, realism and liberalism, see the role of institutions in the implementation of international agreements. The second section addresses the ‘whats’, ‘whys’, and ‘hows’ of the implementation debate, focusing in particular on the interface between the concepts of implementation, effectiveness, and compliance. The third section sums up some major lessons from implementation of environmental agreements in post-Communist societies. The fourth section examines the background and the experience of implementation in post-Communist states.
This chapter deals with recent developments in Russian politics at the federal and regional level, providing a backdrop to the subsequent discussion of the division of responsibilities in the implementation of international environmental commitments. The first part of this chapter focuses in particular on relations between Moscow and the regions. The second part turns to political and economic developments in Northwestern Russia in recent years. In addition to providing background information about the history, economy, and industry of the region, a major aim is to sketch the overarching power structures of Northwest Russian politics.
This chapter addresses the Russian implementation of international agreements within fisheries management. It considers how Russian authorities since the break-up of the Soviet Union have implemented their international obligations in the fisheries sector of the country's northwestern region. It also provides a brief overview of the resource basis, with an emphasis on the joint Russian-Norwegian fish stocks, and main target groups. In conclusion, a certain degeneration in implementation capabilities and performance among Russian authorities has taken place in the northern fishery basin throughout the 1990s.
The threats posed by the nuclear complex of Northwestern Russia have attracted attention in recent years. The issue of nuclear safety stands forth as the most highly profiled problem area among the three chosen to focus on in this study. In the area of nuclear safety, environmental and security concerns tend to be closely intertwined. In the area of nuclear safety, bureaucratic controversies have clearly hampered implementation. Moreover, foreign assistance has come to dominate the implementation of Russia's international nuclear safety commitments during the post-Soviet period. Some of the most serious problems encountered in implementation efforts can be ascribed to unresolved issues between Russia and the Western donor states, relating, for example, to indemnity against liability, access to nuclear sites, personnel immunity, and tax exemptions. So while there is some progress in the implementation of Russia's international nuclear safety commitments at the present moment, it is slow and it is fumbling.
Norilsk Nickel is one of Russia's leading producers of non-ferrous and platinum-group metals and the country's largest air polluter. Three of the company's six subsidiaries are located on the Kola Peninsula. This chapter reviews the problem of air pollution on the Kola Peninsula, the status of the area's mining and metallurgical complex — with an emphasis on the Norilsk Nickel combines — and the role of various actors in the implementation of Russia's international obligations related to air pollution control. It reviews implementation performance and target compliance mainly with reference to the LRTAP regime.
This chapter sums up the major findings of the case studies in fisheries management, nuclear safety, and air pollution control. The primary focus is on the ‘implementation activities’ carried out in each case: what has been done to implement the various commitments, and how can the success or failure in each individual case best be explained? As a point of departure for the discussion, the chapter sets out some of the main conclusions from the case studies on implementation performance and target compliance. Rounding up, it attempts to extract some lessons of a more general nature from the study and for the implementation of international environmental agreements in Russia in particular.