Introduction

If citizenship is to be a core theme of environmental discourses, politics and policy, then it must be more broadly linked to environmental justice and set within the wider context of firstly the sustainability discourse and secondly the current debates on governance. We recognise that the contemporary debate around environmental citizenship is both vigorous and erudite (see, for example, Barry, 1999). Dobson (2003) for example offers a conception of ecological citizenship which is more theoretically robust than the rather naive conceptions of environmental citizenship typified by the Environment Canada approach discussed later (Environment Canada, 2001). We are interested in the political and policy implications and opportunities of the concept of environmental citizenship, and whilst we recognise the importance of Dobson's distinction between environmental and ecological citizenships, for the purposes of our argument, we will conflate the two. In pursuit of this, we would therefore wish to address three themes:

• Environmental citizenship is not, in our view, a particularly useful term upon which to base political action. It is important to recognise the need to encourage changes in human behaviour in relation to ■¡H the environment, and that individuals should have both rights and -g responsibilities with respect to this. It may also be useful to regard

S environmental citizenship as part of the educational agenda [but it]

underplays the broader social and political dimensions implicit in the concept of sustainability or sustainable development. [...] 'in • Following from this, any conception of citizenship must be more broadly and centrally linked to both justice and equity. In the case of environmental citizenship, we wish to argue that the emergence of environmental justice as both a vocabulary for political mobilization and action and as a policy principle (Agyeman and Evans, 2oo4) gives cause to see this as a more powerful tool for securing change than the concept of environmental citizenship. • Finally, citizenship is integrally connected to questions of governance, and in turn to sustainability. Citizenship for sustainability can only be understood as part of a reconstituted commitment to the processes of governance and justice. [...]

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