Environmental protection presents a challenge for commodity-producing democracies. To account for the enforcement of environmental laws in decentralized systems, this article proposes a multilevel approach that highlights the importance of national laws and subnational implementation rules to the politics of enforcement. This approach contrasts with prominent scholarship that focuses on sanctions and the electoral incentives and bureaucratic resources of enforcers. The advantages of the multilevel approach are demonstrated by the enforcement of the native forest protection regime (NFPR) in the Argentine Chaco Forest, which is shaped not only by whether sanctions on illegal deforestation are applied by subnational authorities but also by the design of both the national law and subnational regulations. The article employs quantitative data and case studies based on extensive fieldwork to show how affected subnational organized interests influenced the design of the NFPR and the provincial regulations that weaken or strengthen enforcement.
Fernández Milmanda, Belén, and Candelaria Garay. "The Multilevel Politics of Enforcement: Environmental Institutions in Argentina." Politics & Society 48.1 (March 2020): 3-26.