Deliberating and Monitoring Climate Action: How the Parliamentary Assembly of the Union for the Mediterranean Can Increase Its Relevance

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UNU Institute on Comparative Regional Integration Studies
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Inter-parliamentary assemblies have been portrayed as having the potential to contribute to the legitimacy of intergovernmental climate debates. This policy brief focuses on the specific case of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Union for the Mediterranean (PA-UfM). Based on a rigorous analysis of the functioning of the Assembly, we demonstrate how this inter-parliamentary institution can play a relevant role in deliberating and monitoring regional climate action. Since this potential is hampered by several limitations, we propose three main recommendations that could strengthen the added value of parliamentary involvement in interregional climate policy agreements. First, the members of parliament of the EU should promote climate change action as a common good, with special attention paid to the needs of the most disadvantaged societal groups. Second, they should pay more attention to the power asymmetries within the Union for the Mediterranean, as Southern Mediterranean neighbourhood countries often have lower capacity levels. Third, they should more actively reach out to interest groups (including civil society) to participate in the climate change debates of the PA-UfM and promote parliamentary democracy in the member countries of the UfM.

Climate policy, intergovernmentalism, Mediterranean area, PA-UfM, EU