Environmental issues are becoming increasingly hard to ignore. More extreme weather patterns, rising sea levels and wide-spread pollution complicate everyday lives of millions of people around the world, but governments’ action on these issues is often slow. This raises concerns that the longer we wait to act on environment, the more likely we are to find ourselves in crisis conditions that require swift action at the expense of democratic governance.
Parliaments play an important role in democratic policymaking, but they are already getting bypassed when it comes to environmental action. To examine the extent to which parliaments protect the environment, the report examines single-use plastic (SUP) bans in 32 countries and three in-depth case studies of Barbados, Kenya and Thailand. It suggests that legislatures can play an important role in environmental policymaking and that promoting swift environmental action at the expense of democratic governance does not always pay dividends.