Sub-national responses to climate change in England: evidence from local area agreements

Graham Pearce, Stuart Cooper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The machinery of governance to address climate change at the sub-national level in England continues to evolve. Drawing on documentary evidence and the views of civil servants and local authority officials from the English West Midlands, this article explores the process through an examination of the inclusion of climate change indicators in the recent round of Local Area Agreements (LAAs), negotiated between central government and local authorities and Local Strategic Partnerships. Considerable popularity has been accorded these indicators nationally, but there are important variations in the pattern of take up. Moreover, significant uncertainties surround the contribution of local measures to reduce CO2 emissions and the targets attached to measures to adapt to climate change are seen as undemanding. Conversely, the impending Carbon Reduction Commitment will act as a powerful incentive for public bodies to cut CO2 emissions from their estates. Although potentially contributing to greater coherence in tackling climate change, achieving collective action through LAAs will prove problematic.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-217
Number of pages19
JournalLocal Government Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 13 Apr 2011


  • climate change
  • local area agreements
  • measuring performance


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