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Urban Transport Projects: Patterns and Trends in Lending, 1999-2009

2011, Mitric, Slobodan

The study consisted of developing a compendium of profiles for all free-standing urban transport projects funded by the Bank in calendar years from 1999 through 2009, followed by a first-pass synthesis of patterns and trends. There were 50 such projects. In addition, profiles were done for several projects from this period which were classified as urban or transport, but with significant urban transport components. Also, profiles were done for several operations approved before 1999 or after 2009, because they formed organic sequences with some operations in the 1999-2009 batches, in the same city or the same country. In all, profiles were done for 56 operations. A list of these projects is in annex one. Full profiles are in annex two, grouped by the geographic region, and in the chronological order according to the date of loan approval. The sources consulted in writing the profiles included project appraisal documents, loan and project agreements, restructuring papers, and implementation completion reports. In addition to this introduction, the synthesis report has four chapters. In the next (second) chapter, a brief overview is provided of the batch of projects for which the profiles were done. Chapter three reviews urban transport programs by region. Chapter four presents outcome ratings for completed projects and issues related to their success or otherwise. Chapter five discusses the fit between the projects and a provisional version of the Bank's urban transport strategy.

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Climate Change and Individual Behavior: Considerations for Policy

2010, Liverani, Andrea

Climate change is anthropogenic - the product of billions of acts of daily consumption. That solutions need to be anthropogenic too is well accepted. Yet, suggested solutions are normally cast in the realms of finance and technology, often neglecting the primal root of the problem: individual behavior. An emerging body of social-psychology scholarship has examined the barriers and drivers of individual behavior in relation to both adaptation and mitigation. This paper reviews some of its conclusions, and suggests policy areas that should be considered in devising appropriate interventions.

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Climate Change Governance

2010, Meadowcroft, James

Climate change governance poses difficult challenges for contemporary political/administrative systems. These systems evolved to handle other sorts of problems and must now be adapted to handle emerging issues of climate change mitigation and adaptation. This paper examines long-term climate governance, particularly in relation to overcoming 'institutional inertia' that hampers the development of an effective and timely response. It argues that when the influence of groups that fear adverse consequences of mitigation policies is combined with scientific uncertainty, the complexity of reaching global agreements, and long time frames, the natural tendency is for governments to delay action, to seek to avoid antagonizing influential groups, and to adopt less ambitious climate programs. Conflicts of power and interest are inevitable in relation to climate change policy. To address climate change means altering the way things are being done today - especially in terms of production and consumption practices in key sectors such as energy, agriculture, and transportation. But some of the most powerful groups in society have done well from existing arrangements, and they are cautious about disturbing the status quo. Climate change governance requires governments to take an active role in bringing about shifts in interest perceptions so that stable societal majorities in favor of deploying an active mitigation and adaptation policy regime can be maintained. Measures to help effect such change include: building coalitions for change, buying off opponents, establishing new centers of economic power, creating new institutional actors, adjusting legal rights and responsibilities, and changing ideas and accepted norms and expectations.

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Cognitive and Behavioral Challenges in Responding to Climate Change

2010, Norgaard, Kari Marie

Climate scientists have identified global warming as the most important environmental issue of our time, but it has taken over 20 years for the problem to penetrate the public discourse in even the most superficial manner. While some nations have done better than others, no nation has adequately reduced emissions and no nation has a base of public citizens that are sufficiently socially and politically engaged in response to climate change. This paper summarizes international and national differences in levels of knowledge and concern regarding climate change, and the existing explanations for the worldwide failure of public response to climate change, drawing from psychology, social psychology and sociology. On the whole, the widely presumed links between public access to information on climate change and levels of concern and action are not supported. The paper's key findings emphasize the presence of negative emotions in conjunction with global warming (fear, guilt, and helplessness), and the process of emotion management and cultural norms in the construction of a social reality in which climate change is held at arms length. Barriers in responding to climate change are placed into three broad categories: 1) psychological/conceptual, 2) social and cultural, and 3) structural (political economy). The author provides policy considerations and summarizes the policy implications of both psychological and conceptual barriers, and social and cultural barriers. An annotated bibliography is included.

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Enhanced Financial Mechanisms for Post 2012 Mitigation

2010, Figueres, Christiana, Streck, Charlotte

Despite the many calls to reform the CDM, its conceptual underpinnings are strong and it will most likely survive in the post-2012 climate regime. Some modifications may be considered in the short term to strengthen the effectiveness and transparency of the mechanism without modifying the Marrakesh Accords. In the medium term substantially increased mitigation efforts in developing countries may require a combination of three possible financial mechanisms: 1) the current activity-based CDM albeit improved; 2) a second market mechanism that would seek to improve the long term emission trends of developing countries by promoting broad based emission reduction programs primarily in the private sector; and 3) a third financial mechanism outside of the market which would be an incentive for the adoption of policy changes leading to a low carbon path, but where emission reductions would not be used as international offsets.