There is a trend towards greater transparency Climate crooks will be identified

Within all three institutions scrutinized, there is a clear trend towards tougher review procedures in the form of much more explicit naming (and shaming) of laggards and non-compliers and tougher language more generally. As noted above, within CLRTAP, an interesting three-stage procedure has been developed, with the explicit-ness of this naming gradually stepped up if non-compliance persists. This development can of course partly be seen as a result of the parties over time developing a foundation of familiarity and trust, allowing tougher language to be used without threatening the very cooperative fundament itself. Similar explicitness and toughness within the climate regime must develop gradually over time and cannot be expected for some time yet. However, it can also be argued that the trend witnessed in the three institutions is part of a more general trend in international and national politics towards greater transparency and a 'right to know', as perhaps evidenced by the adoption of the 1998 Aarhus Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters, and a related directive within the EU context. Thus the climate regime starts at a time when there is a generally higher level of transparency in environmental matters, and the need for a warm-up phase in this regard may be less pertinent.

But will non-compliers really be identified in a precise and uncontested manner? As indicated in the introduction, this is one of the key climate compliance challenges. Again, the international climate regime's Expert Review Teams represent an institutional advantage, though a more elaborate answer to the question will partly depend upon more technical issues with regard to the measuring of sources and sinks - issues which are explored in more detail in other chapters in this book. However, evidence from the three scrutinized institutions indicates that such identification may very well often take place on the basis of self-reporting of non-compliance, reducing the need for complicated discussions and decisions by regime bodies on precise and uncon-tested non-compliance. In the case of CLRTAP and VOCs, for example, all three cases of non-compliance in 2001 arose through self-reporting. The lesson that might be drawn is that self-reporting may put the non-compliant party in a better light and position than it would be in if it were to wait for the regime bodies to act on its potential non-compliance.

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