Environmental Governance Challenges in Kiribati : An Agenda for Legal and Policy Responses


Dejo Olowu
Senior Lecturer,
Nelson Mandela School of Law,
University of Fort Hare,
50 Church Street,
P. O. Box 7426,
East London 5201,
South Africa


Since the global notion of environmental governance is principally about how to achieve the goals of environmental conservation and sustainable development, analysing approaches to environmental governance invariably requires critical study of the policies and structures in place that determine how power is exercised and how environmental decisions are made not only in the abstract context of internationalism but with particular regard to national situations. This essay examines the legal and policy frameworks regulating environmental protection and the conservation of biodiversity within the broader goal of effective environmental governance in Kiribati . Acknowledging that Kiribati encounters formidable challenges in institutional, normative and policy terms, this essay particularly deals with the issue of pollution and its long- and short-term implications for this nation of many atolls. While highlighting the existence of significant treaties, municipal laws and diverse policy mechanisms, this essay identifies gaps and weaknesses, making suggestions for their reform and enhancement. Recognising that the path to the future lies in the synergy of initiatives and inputs from the government, the people and all other stakeholders in the environmental well-being of Kiribati, this essay proffers some viable trajectories for strategic responses.


Biodiversity, environment, environmental governance, international law, Kiribati, national, pollution, regional, South Pacific, waste management.


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