Climate policy in France: Between national interest and global solidarity?

Joseph Szarka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article investigates the evolving relationships between national interests and the global solidarity principles emerging from the 1992 UNFCCC. It argues that France developed a distinctive climate policy template, which allowed modest but significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. However, faced with heightened climate challenges, policy elites in the 2000s hesitated between focusing on long-standing national interests and rescuing the policy template, or responding to global solidarity principles and substantially revising it. The article concludes that ambitious policy measures were proposed but not implemented due to the persistence of a construal of national interest in terms of short-term economic competitiveness, but also because of the underdevelopment of the international climate regime between the 1997 Kyoto Protocol and the 2009 Copenhagen Accord.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-183
Number of pages29
JournalPolitique européenne
Publication statusPublished - 2011


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