Climate change legislation in the UK and Mexico: lessons for climate governance

This project is studying the role of strategic long-term framework legislation on climate change as an instrument to enable deep decarbonisation.

10 years of the UK Climate Change Act – new project outputs

The UK Climate Change Act of 2008 is one of the most mature examples of a strategic framework law on climate change. In April 2018 we published a review of the first 10 years of the Act, documenting the impact this framework law has had on the UK climate change debate, evaluating the Act against the key requirements of Paris-compatible governance, and detailing lessons for other countries on how climate change legislation is best structured to be effective.

Lessons learnt from Mexico

Our policy report analysing the experience of Mexico and its General Law on Climate Change against a number of the key elements of Paris-compatible governance is forthcoming in summer 2018. This case study is enabling us to assess the experience of a country that has learned from the UK and adopted a similar governance model. We are focusing on policy diffusion and identifying key lessons relevant for further countries considering adopting similar models.

How will our research help policymakers?

This project is greatly improving the evidence base on strategic climate legislation. Through its deep analysis of the UK case demonstrates how such legislation can change the policy debate and ensure increased ambition despite changing political circumstances: in the UK the Act has succeeded in maintaining a sense of purpose, continuity and direction in climate policy during a politically volatile time.

Strategic climate legislation is important for achieving the structural changes and societal consent required for deep decarbonisation and we aim to build understanding of this importance among EU policymakers and the global philanthropic community to build funding to support efforts to implement the Paris Agreement.

The Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment gratefully acknowledges financial assistance from the European Climate Foundation in support of this project, which is part of a wider collaboration run by ECF, with Ecologic and IDDRI.