Research Handbooks in International Law series
Edited by Catherine Brölmann and Yannick Radi
Chapter 19: The making of international environmental law
When looking at the development of international environmental law, different normative instruments should be considered. On the one hand, there are the Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs), which greatly contribute to shape principles and norms in this field through their treaty provisions and decisions of their bodies. These regulatory tools and processes have raised criticisms with regard to their legitimacy and effectiveness. On the other hand, contemporary environmental matters are increasingly linked with economic development and human rights issues. In this highly interdependent context, trade and investment agreements, judgments and awards by judicial and quasi-judicial bodies influence the formation of international environmental law. This chapter focuses, firstly, on the features of MEAs decision-making procedures; secondly, it highlights how environmental matters are taken into account by international judiciaries, by trade and investment regimes and in non-state actors’ rules. The concluding remarks suggest ways to improve the integration and synergies among these legal regimes.
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