Globalisation and Natural Resources Law

Globalisation and Natural Resources Law

Challenges, Key Issues and Perspectives

Elena Blanco and Jona Razzaque

This book examines the complex relationships between trade, human rights and the environment within natural resources law. It discusses key theories and challenges whilst exploring the concepts and approaches available to manage crucial natural resources in both developed and developing countries. Primarily aimed at undergraduates and postgraduates, it includes exercises, questions and discussion topics for courses on globalisation and /or natural resources law as well as an ample bibliography for those interested in further research. The book will therefore serve as an invaluable reference tool for academics, researchers and activists alike.

Chapter 4: Global Governance and Sustainable Natural Resource Management through States and International Institutions

Elena Blanco and Jona Razzaque

Subjects: environment, environmental law, law - academic, environmental law, human rights, politics and public policy, human rights


INTRODUCTION 1. Globalisation has led to important changes in governance models and in the distribution of power between state and non-state actors. This process has been aided and accompanied by the creation of new supranational forums where private–public partnerships collaborate in the gathering of information, exchange of facilities, formulation of policies and implementation of projects. This evolving process of power redistribution requires a reassessment of the roles of both ‘traditional’ or state actors and institutions and non-state actors in global affairs1 and their contributions to globalisation and natural resource governance, as well as their political, economic and social interactions. This chapter focuses on states, international organisations and intergovernmental actors. Other non-state actors are considered in the next chapter. 2. STATES Nation states, emerging from the post-Westphalia peace, have been for centuries the main actors in international relations with a well developed theory in international law about their powers and prerogatives as well as limits to their actions. This central role in the international sphere began 1 By traditional we mean states and international institutions thought to be the subjects of public international law, while individuals were called objects. This terminology has been long challenged by a preferred view which considers all those who participate in the supranational sphere as ‘participants’. See Higgings, R. (1994), Problems and Processes: International Law and How We Use It, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 39. 171 M2515 - BLANCO PRINT.indd 171 04/02/2011 16:21 172 Globalisation and natural resources law to be challenged in the...

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