The New International Climate Regime and EU Member States’ Commitments

  • Přemysl Štěpánek
Keywords: climate change, post-2020 climate regime, European Union member states, commitments


This article examines the strength and ambition of twenty-one EU member states’ national emissions commitments in the context of the Paris Agreement adopted in December 2015. The outcomes show that mainly countries situated in Scandinavia, the British Isles and Western Europe already included post-2020 emissions targets in their national law or strategies. External factors derived from constructivism or the theory of structural embeddedness indicate a significant correlation with the strength and ambition of the commitments, while domestic factors give mixed results. A number of EU members, including those belonging to the G-7 group, demonstrate, in comparison with the most developed non-EU countries, greater efforts to satisfy the important principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. This is essential for maintaining the EU leadership in the international climate regime.

Author Biography

Přemysl Štěpánek
born in 1978, he completed his studies of Political Science with a special focus on International Relations at the Philosophical Faculty of Charles University in Prague, and he also graduated from the Forestry program at the Czech Agricultural University in Prague. Currently, he is a Ph.D. student at the Department of International Relations of the Institute of Political Studies at the Faculty of Social Sciences of Charles University in Prague. His research interest focuses mainly on international organizations and regimes in the environmental area.
Research Articles