Scotland and Spain: the division of environmental competences

Colin T. Reid, Gerardo Ruiz-Rico Ruiz

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    4 Citations (Scopus)


    Two conflicting forces beset any attempts to fit responsibility for environmental matters into modern constitutional structures. On the one hand the political desire for less centralised government calls for devolution of power to regional or local authorities, so that responsibilities are divided and distributed between different levels of government. On the other, the fact that no aspect of the environment can be treated as if it were a separate compartment suggests that responsibilities should be integrated in one place, an approach supported by the increasing awareness that there is a need for environmental considerations to influence all areas of policy if the goal of sustainable development is to be achieved. Fitting responses to the conditions1 of a particular locality is an important element in successful environmental policy, but so is ensuring that a coherent and holistic approach is taken, unhindered by institutional divisions.2 The purpose of this paper is to examine how two structures of devolved administration, for the Autonomous Communities in Spain and for Scotland, meet the challenge of reconciling these opposite forces, and how the constitutional structures influence the way in which potential problems are resolved
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)209-225
    Number of pages16
    JournalInternational and Comparative Law Quarterly
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2003


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