The climate change debate raises the issue of the often identified requirement to incorporate climate policy into other policy sectors, often termed climate “mainstreaming” or climate policy integration (CPI). This paper explores the need for CPI, the state of current understanding, and proposals for integration of climate policy at the national policy scale. This report discusses that climate policy involves two main areas of operation: mitigation and adaptation, which are addressed in a largely separate fashion within the scientific, policy and international regimes. This division has largely shaped the research and policy agenda on climate change since 1992. It further argues that, climate change is a complex issue driven by economic growth and development, and requires innovative approaches that incorporate multiple policy sectors. The author argues that policy integration should be seen as a core topic in climate change debates. Central to this is maintaining a focus on harmony of climate change and sustainable development. This is consistent with the proposition that any climate policy which does not take a comprehensive approach to development will struggle to take hold in national policy systems. The paper recommends that:
a more purposeful survey and identification of current or proposed policy and administrative structures and processes that may advance CPI across national contexts is required
investigations at the national levels of CPI is needed to provide worked examples of possible strategies
review national communications to examine whether practice (or at least proposed national actions) is in fact ahead of the CPI literature in identifying implementation strategies
place greater attention to the public policy and administration mechanisms for more effective policy.