Brazilian foreign policy in the context of global climate norms

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This article is an enquiry into Brazil’s evolving responses to global
climate change norms. Following an overview of the evolution of international
normative frameworks of climate change governance, I examine
the relationship between some of these international norms and domestic
environmental politics in Brazil. Internationally, the analysis focuses
on the North/South political debate about climate change and its role
in shaping understandings about the impact and responses to global
warming. Domestically, I explore the evolving relationship between state
and private actors in the decision-making process. I argue that Brazil’s
official position on climate change negotiations is currently influenced
by a nationalist/developmental approach based on the particular worldview
of the dominant faction within the foreign ministry and backed up
by private groups, powerful sectors in the military establishment, key
ministries, and the presidency. Yet, this worldview has been increasingly
undermined/permeated by other state and nonstate actors, who are
more closely aligned with the environmental concerns of international
stakeholders. The ensuing domestic conflict has important implications
for the legitimacy and coherence of the Brazilian position in international
climate change negotiations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)369-386
Number of pages18
JournalForeign Policy Analysis
Early online date10 Jul 2012
Publication statusPublished - 3 Oct 2013


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