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Straw constitutes a vast, valuable, and under utilised agricultural by-product, which has a great potential for utilisation as an animal feedstuff. However, due to the way in which it is constructed, the digestible sugars, cellulose and hemicelluloses, are tightly chemically bound by heavily lignified cell walls which provide the wheat plant stem with its strength and structure, but in doing so greatly inhibit the digestibility and nutritive value of the material to ruminant animals. Therefore, the utilisation of this resource as an animal feed can only be realised effectively, if the nutritional and digestibility values of the material can be improved by the innovation and successful application of an effective treatment method, be that physical, chemical or biological. Previously devised methods of upgrading the digestibility and nutritive value of forages, with the possible exception of urea treatment, have proven either insufficient, environmentally unsound, or economically infeasible to those concerned, particularly those in developing world. Therefore, there is a distinct need to develop techniques which can avoid these pitfalls and still yield the desired results in the context of animal nutrition. Previous research has indicated that members of the genus Pleurotus white rot fungi, have great potential for application in the biological upgrading of wheat straw. Therefore, the objective of this work was to investigate biological techniques, using 3 strains of Pleurotus fungi which may have the potential to be utilised in the biological upgrading of wheat straw.
In the developed world, wheat straw is commonly regarded as a waste product. An obvious application is as an animal feed source, however, the digestible sugars (cellulose and hemicelluloses) are chemically bound within lignified cell walls. This severely inhibits its digestibility and thus its energy and nutritive value by ruminants. Various methods have been used to increase its digestibility and nutritive value by breaking, or weakening the linkages between the lignin and hemicelluloses prior to it being fed to ruminants. Where grass and silage are abundant and relatively cheap sources of animal feed, it is not cost effective to try and utilize this resource. However where alternative feed sources are not readily available, low cost upgrading of an abundant source of fodder would have many benefits. The objectives of this study were to use 8 strains of white rot fungi to pretreat wheat straw to improve its in-vitro digestibility, and to determine the impact of the fungi on the in-vitro digestibility method, i.e. to see if fungi have any adverse effects on the digestibility method.
The Evolutionary Map of the Universe (EMU) is a proposed radio continuum survey
of the Southern Hemisphere up to declination + 30°, with the Australian
Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP). EMU will use an automated source
identification and measurement approach that is demonstrably optimal, to
maximise the reliability and robustness of the resulting radio source
catalogues. As a step toward this goal we conducted a “Data
Challenge” to test a variety of source finders on simulated images. The
aim is to quantify the accuracy and limitations of existing automated source
finding and measurement approaches. The Challenge initiators also tested the
current ASKAPsoft source-finding tool to establish how it could benefit from
incorporating successful features of the other tools. As expected, most finders
show completeness around 100% at ≈ 10σ dropping to about 10% by
≈ 5σ. Reliability is typically close to 100% at ≈
10σ, with performance to lower sensitivities varying between finders. All
finders show the expected trade-off, where a high completeness at low
signal-to-noise gives a corresponding reduction in reliability, and vice versa.
We conclude with a series of recommendations for improving the performance of
the ASKAPsoft source-finding tool.
One thing should already be clear from the preceding chapters: transnational climate governance is qualitatively different from the standard multilateral model that has characterised the last two decades of climate change governance. The multilateral model is a hierarchical one; it functions through the generally accepted legitimate authority of nation-states to act on issues that transcend borders. In the multilateral process, a legally binding global treaty engages all nation-states in a common (and hopefully enforceable) purpose. In theory, there is an assumption of smooth vertical development of policy that draws on the legitimate, traditional authority of nation-states, both in constructing the international treaty and formulating national regulations. International law translates to national regulation, which directs domestic actions at more local levels. Alternatives to the authority and legitimacy of the multilateral process are rarely considered quite simply because the global system has functioned through this process for over a century (Denemark & Hoffmann 2008) despite criticisms about the interests served by this system and whose order it seeks to preserve (Cox 1987; Murphy 1994; Cox & Sinclair 1996). The emergence and functioning of TCCG asks us to question and engage questions of authority and legitimacy with a more critical eye, to understand how, in Hajer’s (2003) words, we can have policy without a polity, or how, as Rosenau asks, a range of actors can govern without the legal authority to do so (Rosenau & Czempiel 1992).
This chapter examines the political dynamics underpinning the emergence of TCCG. In the first section of the chapter, we undertake a temporal analysis of the growth of TCCG, focusing on its parallel evolution with the international climate change regime and the broader political-economic shifts outlined in the previous chapter. In the second section of the chapter, our analysis turns to consider the patterns and drivers of private, hybrid and public transnational initiatives over time and to consider the governance functions that are being pursued in these different forms of TCCG. Through this analysis, we seek to capture the process through which climate politics has pluralised by describing and offering explanations for the growth of institutional diversity over time.
In doing so, the three theoretical lenses discussed in Chapter 3 serve as guides for our analysis. The agency-centred perspective is particularly helpful for highlighting the interests of the actors that populate climate politics, their sources of influence and factors underpinning the demand and supply of new forms of transnational governance. The social and system dynamics perspective helps to explain the diffusion of common practices and governance techniques through communities of environmental practitioners and policymakers. Finally, the critical political theory perspective sheds light on the marketisation of a substantial cluster of TCCG initiatives, the ideological underpinnings of these initiatives and the particular constellations of public and private forces that animate them. We use the TCCG database and illustrative case-studies to interrogate these issues illuminating the relationship between the agency of different actors, market logics, functional imperatives and normative contexts.
Our knowledge of transnational governance has been fundamentally shaped by the theoretical perspectives and methodological approaches that have been used to study it (O’Neill et al. 2013, 444). Primarily using a case-study approach revolving around a few high-profile examples, research on transnational governance has focused on the ways in which actors have sought to engage with different forms of transnational governance, the various functions that such arrangements seek to perform and their potential consequences in terms of legitimacy and effectiveness. Such approaches have yielded significant insights into these aspects of transnational governance but cannot, by their very nature, achieve a more comprehensive or systematic view. As O’Neill et al. (2013) suggest, such approaches may be ill-equipped to deal with the challenges of ‘complexity and uncertainty, vertical linkages across multiple scales, horizontal linkages across issue areas, and (often rapidly) evolving problem sets and institutional initiatives’ that beset global environmental governance research, such that new methodological approaches are required. If we regard transnational governance initiatives as having something in common – in terms of what they are seeking to accomplish, or in terms of the ways in which they are organised and constituted – we suggest that methodological innovations capable of creating a more comprehensive account of the overall phenomenon are required.
In order to develop such a broader understanding of the extent and nature of transnational governance in the climate change domain, our approach extends beyond small n case-studies or surveys of one particular type of transnational arrangement through the construction and analysis of a database of sixty transnational climate governance initiatives. This approach enables an analysis of the contours of transnational climate governance in a way that has not been possible within existing methodological approaches, allowing for a more thorough description of who and what are involved, where it is taking place, and how and why it is being pursued.
Our intention at the outset of this project was to move beyond the focus on individual cases or particular segments of the world of TCCG in order to examine what we might be able to discover collectively about this phenomenon. In this final chapter, we return to this overarching theme and identify the ways in which our analysis of TCCG contributes to ongoing debates in the field.
Underpinning this contribution, we suggest, are two novel aspects of our work. First, the book provides the first analysis of transnational governance that includes both an extensive database of a large number and a diverse array of particular case-studies. Existing research in the field of transnational governance has been mostly based on either individual examples or a small number of cases; whereas these can provide rich and nuanced analyses, there is nevertheless a significant value added in attempting to say something about this phenomenon as a whole. While we have not been able to survey the entire universe of cases in the transnational climate governance arena, a task that would be difficult to undertake given that much of this activity is relatively unknown, we have devised a strategy to maximise the diversity of cases we explore. In the sense that the approach we have developed includes the full variety of forms of TCCG, we thus suggest that it can be regarded as representative of the phenomenon as a whole. The database approach has enabled us to see patterns in the types of initiatives that predominate in TCCG, in terms of the types of actors, the issues upon which they focus, the forms of institutionalisation, the practices of governance, the claims to legitimacy and the geographical reach of TCCG initiatives.
The world of climate politics is increasingly no longer confined to the activities of national governments and international negotiations. Critical to this transformation of the politics of climate change has been the emergence of new forms of transnational governance that cut across traditional state-based jurisdictions and operate across public and private divides. This book provides the first comprehensive, cutting-edge account of the world of transnational climate change governance. Co-authored by a team of the world's leading experts in the field and based on a survey of sixty case studies, the book traces the emergence, nature and consequences of this phenomenon, and assesses the implications for the field of global environmental politics. It will prove invaluable for researchers, graduate students and policy makers in climate change, political science, international relations, human geography, sociology and ecological economics.
Transnational governance by its nature is relatively decentralised and highly dispersed. Literature on the transnational organisations of modes of governance such as networks or PPPs has noted their uneven presence across regions, countries and communities (Andonova & Levy 2003; Andonova 2011; Hale & Held 2011). There is limited understanding, however, about the drivers, patterns and implication of such uneven geographies of climate governance initiatives. In this chapter, we investigate the global geographic patterns that have emerged in the terrain of TCCG. We begin with a brief discussion of the important implications that such patterns may have, and what insights the three analytical lenses used in this book can bring to such an analysis. In the second section of the chapter, we use the three lenses to understand the patterns that appear in the database. We examine the spatial clustering of participation in the TCCG initiatives in our database. As other studies have noted, there is a distinct pattern of North–South relations along certain dimensions of participation, giving rising to a number of normative concerns. However, a rigid North–South understanding of participation in TCCG is also somewhat misleading as we find important regional differences, both in terms of who is engaged in TCCG and where governance activities are carried out. We then consider geographic variation in the kinds of issues that transnational climate change initiatives seek to address and examine the consequences for how TCCG is evolving.
The TCCG data and patterns presented in Chapter 2 reveal that the phenomenon of TCCG is characterised by significant diversity. Multiple kinds of actors are operating across various scales, in different regions, and are seeking to mobilise a wide range of discourses, tools, techniques and practices in order to govern. Looking at this landscape, some intriguing puzzles arise in terms of the actors involved in the emergence and diffusion of TCCG, the substantive issues around which activity is clustered, its uneven geographies, patterns of legitimacy and authority, each of which warrants further explanation.
To date, however, the theorisation of transnational politics has mostly been concerned with accounting for the impact of transnational relations on the behaviour of states within the international arena and has yet to address these issues in significant detail. In the rest of this chapter, we develop a novel theoretical approach for analysing TCCG. We begin by examining extant theories of transnational politics. In doing so, we find that they regard transnational relations as a singular, relatively uniform phenomenon, and all too frequently employ a single epistemological framework. In contrast, we seek to account for the multiple forms, functions and clustering of transnational governance in order to answer the range of questions concerning why, how and for whom TCCG is being pursued. Further, in order to be able to explore this diversity adequately, we argue that it is advantageous to bring to bear a range of theoretical perspectives that can illuminate the different dimensions of TCCG. The second section of the chapter thus introduces three broad theoretical lenses that guide our approach to each of the empirical puzzles identified in the last chapter. We term these three lenses agency-based, social and system dynamics and critical political theory on the basis of their common orientations towards particular forms of explaining the social world.
Throughout the course of this book, we have undertaken analysis that delineates the emergence and functioning of TCCG and examines the new authority dynamics and sources of legitimacy that such initiatives draw upon and create. From this analysis, it is clear that there is a great deal of climate governance activity going on outside the halls of multilateral treaty negotiations. This governance activity is institutionally innovative, operating across multiple scales and engaging a wide range of actors in the global response to climate change. Yet perhaps the most important question has yet to be addressed: what does it all add up to? In other words, so what?
Chronicling and analysing the world of transnational climate governance initiatives is not the same as demonstrating that they are having a significant impact on the global response to climate change. For many commentators, such activity is merely a distraction from the hard work of addressing the climate crisis, either because it does not impact upon the real power politics of the issue or because the momentum for change comes from below (Soroos 2001; Bond 2012). We are optimistic that TCCG cannot merely be dismissed as an irrelevance, though we are cognizant that our grounds for optimism stem as much from the understanding of the potential for TCCG as they do from concrete evidence of accomplishments of TCCG initiatives to date. As we explore further in this chapter, establishing both the basis upon which such accomplishments might be measured and accruing substantial evidence in this regard remain challenging and relatively unexplored research tasks. We also note that the plurality of TCCG this book has revealed implies that some initiatives may represent useful societal responses to climate change, while others may not. To begin to address the question of how TCCG is having an effect on responses to climate change, and the effectiveness of such endeavours, in this chapter we explore if and how TCCG is reshaping the architecture of global climate governance. We scrutinise whether and how it is having an impact upon the climate change problem, and we discuss the pathways through which these initiatives might advance the goals of transitioning to a low-carbon future.
TCCG is concerned with a range of issues (see Chapter 2), from the familiar agendas of promoting renewable energy technologies and the creation of carbon markets to issues of investment risk, food security and water services with which mainstream climate change governance has had limited involvement. Despite this diversity, we find four predominant sets of issues with which the majority of initiatives are concerned: (1) energy; (2) carbon markets and finance; (3) carbon sequestration and forests; and (4) infrastructure (transport, waste and water projects and systems) (Chapter 2, Figure 2.4).
This chapter explores how and why TCCG focuses on these issues and their potential consequences for understanding climate governance more broadly. First, we examine the nature of the four sets of issues that have come to provide the focus for TCCG activity, and we ask why they have become the focus of activity. While such TCCG patterns are in common with (or connected to) other areas of climate governance, they also have features distinct to both the character of TCCG itself and the nature of the particular issue areas. The second section of the chapter explores how transnational activity around these issues is organised – which types of TCCG arrangement are engaged in which issue areas – and how such areas combine in interesting and sometimes counterintuitive ways. Using a cluster analysis technique to group initiatives, the resulting combinations show no intuitive or natural patterns of TCCG. Rather, TCCG initiatives are put together in much messier ways by particular sorts of actors pursuing particular agendas, combining pre-existing policy and institutional fields with climate change to produce distinct clusters of activity in the TCCG arena.