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Compliance with EU biofuel targets in South-Eastern and Eastern Europe: Do interest groups matter?

  • The European Union requires its member states to establish national targets for the biofuel content of all diesel and petrol supplies for transport placed on the market. This study explores the adoption of this European Union policy across South-Eastern and Eastern Europe between 2003 and 2012. In theoretical terms, we are specifically interested in examining the role of interest groups for policy adoption. We argue that the oil industry in general and the producers of biofuels in particular will support the establishment of national biofuel targets because they expect economic gains. By contrast, we expect environmental groups with international and regional ties to oppose such targets because biofuels have come under attack for their potential environmental impact including deforestation, a loss in biodiversity, and food insecurity. Empirically, we concentrate on policy adoptions in 21 South-Eastern and Eastern European states with varied relations to the European Union and the Energy Community. Our analysis supports our mainThe European Union requires its member states to establish national targets for the biofuel content of all diesel and petrol supplies for transport placed on the market. This study explores the adoption of this European Union policy across South-Eastern and Eastern Europe between 2003 and 2012. In theoretical terms, we are specifically interested in examining the role of interest groups for policy adoption. We argue that the oil industry in general and the producers of biofuels in particular will support the establishment of national biofuel targets because they expect economic gains. By contrast, we expect environmental groups with international and regional ties to oppose such targets because biofuels have come under attack for their potential environmental impact including deforestation, a loss in biodiversity, and food insecurity. Empirically, we concentrate on policy adoptions in 21 South-Eastern and Eastern European states with varied relations to the European Union and the Energy Community. Our analysis supports our main arguments in suggesting that a stronger presence of environmental groups decreases the chances of adopting national biofuel targets across our country sample while producer interests tend to increase adoptions. This finding holds true also when controlling for a country's European Union membership and accession perspective, membership in the Energy Community, and additional domestic-level factors. These results add more generally to our understanding about compliance with European Union policies and environmental governance.show moreshow less

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Metadaten
Author:Jale Tosun, Kai Schulze
DOI:https://doi.org/10.1177/0263774X15605923
ISSN:0263-774X (print)
ISSN:1472-3425 (online)
Parent Title (English):Environment & planning : international journal of urban and regional research ; C, Government & policy
Publisher:Sage Publ.
Place of publication:London
Document Type:Article
Language:English
Year of first Publication:2015
Year of Completion:2015
Release Date:2017/03/27
Tag:Biofuels; Eastern Europe; Energy Community; European Union; South-Eastern Europe; lobbying
Volume:33
Issue:5
Pagenumber:19
First Page:950
Last Page:968
Organizational units:Juristische Fakultät / Öffentliches Recht
Peer Review:Referiert