This chapter examines the relationship between private investments and the human right to water. While States remain the main holders of human rights obligations, the delivery of water services may often be under the control of private actors. This reality complicates the legal landscape, pointing out the need to analyse the nexus between States’ obligations and corporate responsibilities. Through the scrutiny of international and national case law, the chapter identifies the substantive and procedural obligations of private companies related to the right to water. The initiatives undertaken by the private sector, such as the Alliance for Water Stewardship Standard, the CEO Water Mandate and the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol are also used as illustrations of the incorporation of human rights standards in the activities of private companies.
Quasi-judicial bodies have flourished in various areas of international law in the last few decades. These bodies have a mandate to monitor compliance with a body of norms, settle disputes involving those norms, or make factual determinations on the basis of investigations, yet they are not empowered to issue final, binding decisions on questions of international law. This chapter argues that quasi-judicial bodies can be viewed as international lawmakers. They act as procedural rule-makers and are developing a shared collection of principles structuring their procedures. The chapter further suggests that quasi-judicial bodies also act as lawmakers on substantive issues by influencing the interpretation, clarification and refinement of State duties and responsibilities. Quasi-judicial bodies have proved influential in the interpretation of State responsibilities by both national and international courts. Like judicial bodies, they foster compliance with international law and resolve potential conflicts.
Access to and protection of water resources and installations may significantly be affected by armed conflicts. The aim of this chapter is to examine how international humanitarian law relates to the protection of water resources and infrastructure during armed conflicts. After having analysed how the 1977 First Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions relating to the protection of victims of international armed conflicts and the 1977 Second Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions relating to the protection of victims of non-international armed conflicts ensure the protection of drinking water supplies, dams and dykes, the chapter focuses on the protection of the environment from the effects of war more broadly. The chapter concludes by presenting the problems of implementation of international humanitarian law – and specifically the protection of water resources during armed conflicts – in the adjudication of the International Criminal Court and the International Court of Justice.
This chapter aims at examining how environmental concerns – and access to water in particular – have entered the field of collective security. Although the trend of including environmental threats in the agenda of the Security Council has been criticized by some permanent members, the concerns regarding water are voiced almost unanimously by all States. Focusing on the thematic discussions in the Security Council on 2016 and 2017, the chapter includes an analysis of the legal mechanisms of cooperation on shared water resources and the role of international humanitarian law (IHL) in safeguarding access to water during armed conflicts and in post-conflict settings. As a basic human need and human right, the provision of safe water is among the highest priorities of post-conflict countries and humanitarian agencies during peacebuilding.