Politics and the Environment : From Theory to Practice book cover
3rd Edition

Politics and the Environment
From Theory to Practice

ISBN 9780415572125
Published April 18, 2012 by Routledge
440 Pages

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Book Description

Politics and the Environment has established itself as one of the most comprehensive textbooks in this area. This new edition has been completely revised and updated whilst retaining the features and the theory-to-practice focus which made the first two editions so successful.

This text is designed to introduce students to the key concepts and issues which surround environmental problems and their political solutions. The authors investigate the people, movements and organisations that form and implement these policies, and explore the barriers which hinder successful introduction of international environmental politics.

The 3rd edition has been expanded to include:

  • The shift in focus in environmental politics from sustainable development to climate change governance
  • An extensive discussion on climate change: including institutional, national and global responses in the aftermath of the Kyoto protocol
  • An increased international focus with more case studies from the UK, Europe, Australia and North America
  • More discussion of global environmental social movements: including the US environmental organisations, in particular the Green Party and the environmental justice groups

This textbook is an invaluable and accessible resource for undergraduates studying environmental politics.

Table of Contents

Introduction  Part 1: Environmental Thought and Political Action  1. Environmental Philosophy  2. Green Ideology  3. Environmental Movements  Part 2: The Background to Environmental Policy Making  4. Rationality and Power in Environmental Decision Making  5. Choosing the Means  6. Valuation of the Environment  Part 3: Multi-Level Environmental Governance: Global to Local  7. Greening Global Governance  8. European Integration  9. Constructing the Green State  10. Local Democracy and Local Authorities.  Conclusion

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James Connelly is Professor of Politics at the University of Hull

Graham Smith is Professor of Politics at the University of Southampton

David Benson is a Lecturer in Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia

Clare Saunders is a Lecturer in Politics & International Relations at the University of Southampton


Politics and the Environment has long been a crucial text for introducing the key elements of environmental politics. In this third edition, the authors provide an excellent updated account of these debates. They range nimbly over the main philosophical underpinnings of environmental debates and the movements driving forward these debates, as well as discuss in detail the responses of political institutions at a variety of levels, from global to local, to environmental problems. Students in the field will come away informed and enriched.

Matthew Paterson, University of Ottawa, Canada

The third edition of this indispensable guide will satisfy both the absolute beginner and the more experienced observer of environmental politics. Fully updated, it steers a deft course between introducing the field and contributing to it, and there is a welcome determination throughout to treat environmental issues as practical problems rather than theoretical curiosities.

Professor Andrew Dobson, Keele University, UK

This expanded edition includes the politics of climate change and expanded coverage of environmental movements and protests. It is a well-balanced introduction to the subject and I highly recommend it.

Christopher Rootes, Professor of Environmental Politics and Political Sociology, University of Kent, UK.


Praise for the previous editions:

'This book is by far and away the best undergraduate introductory textbook yet written on environmental politics.' - John Barry, Environmental Politics

'..an excellent text which deserves the highest readership.' - Dr Paul S. Ganderton, British Ecological Society

'...this book is not only a student reference book but is also very useful for all those interested in the difficult subject of politics and the environment.' - International Journal of Sustainable Development

'Not many books establish themselves as classics in such a short space of time. This one has. All the breadth, depth, lucidity and originality of the first edition are present in this fully updated and uprated second one. If there's a bookshelf or a reading list without Politics and the Environment now is the time to put things right.' - Andrew Dobson, Open University, UK

'An excellent textbook, offering the best introduction to environmental politics currently on the market.' - Tim S. Gray, University of Newcastle, UK