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Antonio Morelli

If it is too soon to clearly foresee the real impact of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, it is certain that the deal adopted at the COP21 represents a landmark in the evolution of international law standards. Set within Tom Franck’s post-ontological framework, the analysis illustrates how the Agreement fosters shared universal standards and an effective solution in addressing universal challenges, such as climate change. The political debate on whether the Paris Agreement comprises only words and promises or is an effective commitment enters the legal arena in terms of a dichotomy between binding versus non-binding sources of international law. The provisions of the Agreement are the results of a heterogeneous combination of both sources, which respectively come into play depending on the elements that are at stake. Through the harmonization of those instruments, it is possible to promote the universality of the standards without weighing down the rising commitment of the major stakeholders involved in solving climate change. From this perspective, the Paris Agreement combines the action of both state and non-state actors, either during the phase of the negotiation or in the implementation of the deal. The contribution of those stakeholders is going to be extremely relevant in their commitment to reducing carbon emissions and energy consumption. In this context, the chapter demonstrates how the Paris Agreement, letting different sources coexist and not collide, as different actors in the international arena, sets the pace for the evolution of new standards in international law.

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Antonio Morelli

Article 42 of the ECT regulates the procedure of amending treaty provisions. The author analyses both formal and substantial aspects, in order to provide a clear framework for ECT interpreters. Moreover, the analysis sheds lights on the 1998 amendment of the ECT, the so-called Trade Amendment. Pictured at the time of the entry into force of the World Trade Organization (WTO), with the Uruguay Round, the ECT Trade Amendment embraced in the treaty regime relevant principles in multilateral trade and, in turn, expanded the scope of the agreement, in order to cover trade in energy-related spheres.

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Antonio Morelli

Article 43 of the ECT leaves undefined the concept of association agreement, leaving it to the will of parties, under the umbrella of the Charter Conference, with States, Regional Economic Integration Organizations, or international organizations. The author analyses association agreements in the EU context, in order to shed light on forms of participation different than membership tout court.

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Antonio Morelli

Article 44 of the ECT regulates the steps for the entry into force of the agreement under international law. Under the lens of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties of 1969 and relevant State practice, the analysis focuses on substantial and procedural aspects of the entry into force mechanism in international law. In turn, with regard to the ECT, it shows how Contracting Parties aim at creating a basis of States’ commitment before giving full effects to the treaty.

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Antonio Morelli

Article 45 of the ECT provides a discipline on provisional application. This is a relative recent development in international law, tailored to overcome traditional political impasse in the practice of concluding international agreements. This chapter focuses on the evolution of such a mechanism, including considerations on the current debate before the UN International Law Commission, where a Draft Report on Provisional Application of Treaties is under discussion. Moreover, with regard to the ECT, it shed lights on the Russian case, as the Federation’s termination of its provisional application opened the ground for investors’ protection issues.

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Antonio Morelli

Article 46 of the ECT does not provide space for reservations. This chapter analyses the mechanism of reservations under the lens of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties of 1969, the 1951 advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice and relevant State practice. Through an analysis of relevant jurisprudence before the European Court of Human Rights and the UN Committee on Human Rights, the analysis defines the principle utile per inutile non vitiatur and tests its possible application to the ECT case.

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Antonio Morelli

Article 47 of the ECT regulates withdrawal provisions. In the light of the principle pacta sunt servanda, vis-à-vis the rebus sic stantibus clause, this chapter sparks a debate on the integrity of international treaties. Through an analysis of the most recent developments in international law, including the Italian withdrawal from the ECT, the author demonstrates how withdrawal from international treaties has been hugely reshaping frontiers and balances in the international arena.

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Antonio Morelli