A Handbook of Globalisation and Environmental Policy, Second Edition
Show Less

A Handbook of Globalisation and Environmental Policy, Second Edition

National Government Interventions in a Global Arena

Edited by Frank Wijen, Kees Zoeteman, Jan Pieters and Paul van Seters

In the current era of globalisation, national governments are increasingly exposed to international influences that present new constraints and opportunities for domestic environmental policies. This comprehensive, revised Handbook pushes the frontiers of theoretical and empirical knowledge, and provides a state-of-the-art examination of the multifaceted effects of globalisation on environmental governance.
Buy Book in Print
Show Summary Details
You do not have access to this content

Chapter 21: Overcoming the Limitations of Environmental Law in a Globalised World

Jonathan Verschuuren


Jonathan Verschuuren SUMMARY Globalisation has negative side-effects on the environment, especially as a consequence of the growing opportunities for businesses to avoid strict national environmental laws by moving operations (or waste) to places in the world where strict environmental legislation either is absent or remains unenforced. National environmental laws indeed have a fundamental flaw, because they only regulate activities within the national territory of a state. There are two ways to deal with the limitations of national law. The first is to abandon national law altogether and focus on non-state law, that is, environmental norms concluded between businesses and nongovernmental organisations (NGOs). The second is to improve national law. Administrative authorities as well as the legislature can stimulate and facilitate businesses and NGOs to form partnerships. The legislature can also try to extend the principle of territoriality as much as possible, for instance, by regulating the environmental performance of foreign subsidiaries of enterprises that are legally seated in a country. Slowly but surely, national courts are extending their grip on illegal activities outside national territories. Again, this process can be facilitated by the legislature, for example, by creating liberal procedural rules that allow easy access to justice and by instituting a system of legal aid that facilitates victims of environmental pollution from developing countries to sue polluters’ headquarters in the developed world. INTRODUCTION Law still is mainly aimed at the territories of national states, with national authorities being competent to regulate only events within their national 616 M2782 - WIJEN...

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information

or login to access all content.