The Commission Co-ordinating Climate Change Policies: About the Complexity of Vertical and Horizontal Mainstreaming of Climate Change Policy and the Intergovernmental Relations

  • M. Pérez Gabaldón


This paper is aimed to explain the positive elements of the Commission Co-ordinating Climate Change Policies as an instrument of intergovernmental relations in the frame of a shared competence. Also, it is directed to show the main causes of its lack of effectiveness and efficacy and propose some changes in the system of intergovernmental relations regarding climate change policies, as well as of being pertinent in environmental policies too.

When Climate Change came into the Spanish public agenda, it followed the imprecise system of distribution of competences established for the environmental matter, and this way, it has been seen as a shared competence between the State and Autonomous Communities. In fact, after reviewing Article 45.2 of the Spanish Constitution, which gives public authorities in general a duty to protect, restore, and promote the environment and paying attention to sections 149.1.23 and 148.1.9, it is necessary to turn our attention to the provisions set out by Autonomous Statutes and the jurisprudence of the Constitutional Court. Anyway, even after that, there are no well-drawn borders between their spheres of competence. The lack of clarity in the distribution of competence shows how indispensable the existence of instruments is to guarantee the normal functioning of the environmental policies.

The complexity of the matter and its peculiar mainstreaming—horizontal and vertical—showed the necessity to establish new instruments in order to avoid the overlapping and duplicity of measures and efforts designed to achieve the same objective and to construct a common policy to fight against a global problem. This is the panorama where the Commission Co-ordinating Climate Change Policies was created by the law 1/2005 of 9th of March, establishing a scheme for greenhouse gas emission allowance trading—transposition of directive 2003/87/EC. It was created as an instrument for the cooperation and coordination of the measures developed by the central power and the Autonomous Communities.

In order to analyze this instrument, it is necessary to start with the complex distribution of competences and the special situation of climate change issues. This will lead us to the study of the Spanish intergovernmental relations system as a possible way to solve the problems between competent authorities and, concretely, the paper of the Commission Co-ordinating Climate Change policies.


Clean Development Mechanism Competent Authority Central Power Climate Change Policy Autonomous Community 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Universidad CEU Cardenal HerreraAlfara del Patriarca, ValenciaSpain

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