The UNFCCC has traditionally made decisions by consensus. This means that a decision is only adopted if there is no formal objection from any member state at the COP, leading to obstructionist behaviour and outcomes that represent the lowest common denominator. One proposed solution to this problem is to make decisions by majority-rule, although little has been said about the specificities of implementing majority-rule in the UNFCCC or about its fairness in this context. To this end, this chapter identifies which voting mechanism should be used in the UNFCCC and how votes should be weighted. It considers what rules are needed to govern decisions by majority rule, including whether more votes should be given those who represent more actors, and what sort of majority is needed to make a decision. It argues that COP decisions should be made by majority rule, with some caveats, and that votes should be in part weighted according to the population that each state represents.


Procedural Justice Majority Rule Vote Power Vote Weight Technical Competence 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Luke Tomlinson
    • 1
  1. 1.LondonUK

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