Going Against the Tide: Towards Binding Environmental Regulation of Mining in Chile

Johanna Jarvela, Lotta Aho

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Abstract

Mining industry is one of the only industries not subjected to any international environmental agreement. Thus, only national laws, Corporate Social Responsibility, industry standards, and other forms of self-regulation govern the mining industry. However, there are increasing concerns about the sustainability and social responsibility of this business. In Chile, neoliberal policies were implemented to a great extent during ϭϵϳϬ’s and ϴϬ’s and the legacy of these policies was an almost absent environmental regulation until 2010. This makes Chile an interesting case to investigate the workings and consequences of voluntary environmental regulation based on neoliberal paradigm. Whereas multinational corporations largely influence the current development of environmental regulation, and hence it is increasingly based on voluntary measures and industry guidelines, the socio-environmental conflicts have forced Chile to go against the current and move from soft law towards binding regulation. A situation where a country needs to move from non-regulation or fully privatized regulation back towards hard law and command and control has been less investigated than deregulation and different forms of capitalist influence on governance. We wish to address this gap in literature with this study. Based on our findings, we argue that following neoliberal theory in environmental regulation leads to increasing socio-environmental conflicts.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationFrederiksberg
PublisherCopenhagen Business School [wp]
Number of pages27
ISBN (Electronic)9788797317037
Publication statusPublished - 2022
SeriesCBDS Working Paper
Number2022/1

Keywords

  • Mining
  • Environmental regulation
  • Neoliberalism
  • Chile
  • CSR

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