The Role of Employers’ Organisations and Trade Unions in the Development of Climate Change Policy

By Peter J. Glynn and Roslyn Taplin.

Published by The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper will examine the implications of climate change policy for the labour market, and the role that employer organisations and trade unions play in the development of policy. It will consider whether policymakers and regulators are sufficiently informed to accommodate the requirements of a low carbon workplace and whether the actors in the workplace can effectively implement the technical, regulatory, and social reforms. Employers’ organisations and trade unions play an active role in the provision of sector and labour market information to policy makers, labour relations, and social dialogue in respect to climate change. The paper will find these objectives overlap in some areas and, therefore, create the potential to infringe regulatory jurisdictions. The paper will conclude that the current initiatives are individually suitable, but government models are generally incomplete, lack cohesion, and do not deliver to the extent required by industry or the workplace actors.

Keywords: Climate Change Policy, Labour Market, Employers' Organisations, Trade Unions

The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses, Volume 4, Issue 4, pp.57-65. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 437.332KB).

Peter J. Glynn

PhD Student, Department of Sustainable Development, Bond University, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia

My professional career has been in national industry associations in Australia, with a special focus an labour and workplace law, practice, and regulation. For the past 3 years I have worked in Geneva at the International Labour Organisation and the International Organisation of Employers developing their responses to the workplace issues that arise out of climate change policy. While there is considerable activity and interest, there is as yet not enough clinical evaluation of the theory and practice of the transitions to a low carbon marketplace, and taking into account the workplace and social effects. This is now the focus of my work.

Prof. Roslyn Taplin

Research Director, Australian Centre for Sustainable Mining Practices, University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Professor Roslyn Taplin is the research director of the ACSMP at the University of New South Wales, Sydney. She was formerly a professor of environmental management at Bond University and prior to that, the director of the Environmental Management Program and the director of the Climatic Impacts Centre, Macquarie University. She has also held positions at the University of Adelaide and RMIT University, Melbourne. Her current research interests include: sustainability and mining practices; corporate responses to climate change; climate change adaptation decision making; renewable energy policy; and climate change mitigation approaches, including the clean development mechanism and emissions trading.

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