Opportunities and Constraints of Environmental Peace Making
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Opportunities and Constraints of Environmental Peace Making Lessons Learned Alexander Carius, Adelphi Research The Hague Conference on Environment, Security and Sustainable Development May 9-12, 2004. Highlighting four aspects.

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Opportunities and constraints of environmental peace making lessons learned alexander carius adelphi research the

Opportunities and Constraints of Environmental Peace Making Lessons Learned Alexander Carius, Adelphi ResearchThe Hague Conference onEnvironment, Security and Sustainable DevelopmentMay 9-12, 2004


Highlighting four aspects
Highlighting four aspects

  • Lessons learned on environmental cooperation and sustainable resource use as tools for confidence building

  • Why does research on environment, conflict and cooperation not translate into policies ?

  • How does the environment, conflict and cooperation debate affects questions of governance ?

  • How to communicate lessons learned to policy makers ?


Environmental cooperation and sustainable resource use as tools for confidence building
Environmental cooperation and sustainable resource use as tools for confidence building

  • Environmental cooperation helps to overcome political tensions through an incremental process of sustained interaction, confidence building, and technical cooperation

  • Donors must capitalize on environmental interdependence and the necessity of long-term cooperation with sustained, long-term assistance for confidence building among parties

  • Long-lasting and flexible institutions for establishing and strengthening cooperation are key steps for conflict prevention and confidence and peace-building

  • Cross-sectoral integration in program development both at the national and global level is an important prerequisite for addressing environment and security linkages


Environmental cooperation as an opportunity for crisis and conflict prevention
Environmental cooperation as an opportunity for crisis and conflict prevention

  • Conflicts surrounding natural resources are more likely to occur at a sub-national level and hence are less visible

  • Programmes, guidelines, rules, norms, conventions of normative institutions need to be transferred and implemented at the domestic level to be effective

  • Institutions are key to avoiding conflict. Sudden or funda-mental changes in the context structure that overstretch the coping capacity of institutions and local actors are the most dangerous in terms of conflict over natural resources

  • Easing tensions between conflict parties requires to address root causes of scarcity like environmental degradation or pollution


Role of donors and policy makers
Role of Donors and Policy Makers conflict prevention

  • Donors need to adequately address the interdependence between natural resource and conflict and should be aware of the impacts of donor activities on these dynamics

  • Central role of peace and conflict impact assessment in conflict prevention and transformation

  • Create pathways for dialogue and confidence building where political tensions exist and exclude the conflict dimension (process facilitation)

  • Reflect growing importance of regional approaches for confidence building and cooperation in donor activities

  • In order to have a long-term impact, the duration of donor projects needs to be expanded to ensure the set-up of flexible and stable institutions of cooperation channels


Environment security debate
Environment & Security Debate conflict prevention

  • Environment and security debate has gained considerable attention by policy makers

  • Normative approaches & concepts (WCED, OSCE, UNEP, MDG, NATO CCMS, GA Cardiff Strategy, …)

  • Case studies on resource scarcity or resource abundance as a potential source of conflict – inequality in resource access, distribution, and wealth

  • Environment and conflict debate shifted from environment as source of conflict to environmental cooperation and sustainable development as a tool for confidence building

  • However, this had rarely lead to appropriate and adequate policies and programmes addressing these linkages in an integrated fashion


Constraints for environmental peace making
Constraints for Environmental Peace Making conflict prevention

  • Dilemma of securitization

  • Fragmentation of discourse and stakeholders

  • Risk to overburden an already overloaded agenda

  • Working on true assumptions without clear evidence

  • Narrow interventional approaches

  • Short term interventions

  • Enormous research efforts are badly communicated


Communication and policy relevance
Communication and policy relevance conflict prevention

  • Don’t call everything an environmental security problem (clarity of concepts and targets)

  • Prioritize relevant policies and problems and specify the risks in geographic and substantial terms

  • Stress the unique selling point of the debate (avoid duplication and bad coordination of policies)

  • Capitalize on practical tools (PCIA to assess peace and conflict impacts of policies, programmes, projects)

  • Targeted briefings and policy dialogues

  • Switch from the normative to the project level

  • Make use of existing communication platforms, networks and facilitators and strengthen their network capabilities


Governance structure
Governance structure conflict prevention

  • If UNEP cannot fulfil its current obligations - for many reasons - how would a system of international environmental governance look like, which guarantees to adequately address far more complex issues such as environment and security linkages?

  • Not a question of having one single international organisation and not a question about international organisations at all

  • Bridging divides and competition among international organizations and improve coordination

  • Enhance dialogue with private sector and transfer successful models of partnerships (Kimberly process, Extractive Industries Initiative, Codes of Conduct, CSR)


Key messages
Key messages conflict prevention

  • Lessons learned on environmental peace making ?

  • Incremental process of sustained interaction, confidence building, and technical cooperation in crisis regions !

  • Why does research on environment, conflict and cooperation not translate into policies ?

  • Improve clarity of concepts, prioritize issues, demonstrate concrete cases and tailor message to decision making !

  • How does the environment, conflict and cooperation debate affects questions of governance ?

  • Foster policy coordination (among regional regimes and initiatives), not strengthening environmental institutions !

  • How to communicate lessons learned to policy makers ?

  • Transfer knowledge and accumulating experience !


Opportunities and constraints of environmental peace making lessons learned alexander carius adelphi research the

Thank you for your attention conflict prevention