Research Handbook on Fundamental Concepts of Environmental Law
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Research Handbook on Fundamental Concepts of Environmental Law

Edited by Douglas Fisher

The quality and the strength of an environmental legal system is a reflection of the conceptual foundations upon which it is constructed. The Research Handbook on Fundamental Concepts of Environmental Law illuminates key aspects of environmental governance through the lens of their underlying dimensions: for example, the form, structure and language of international, regional and national instruments; the function of norms, objectives and standards; and the relevance of economic analysis and of integrated policy formulation.
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Chapter 6: Human rights and the environment: a tale of ambivalence and hope

Anna Grear


This chapter argues that international environmental law and international human rights law, despite the existence of tensions between them, show hopeful signs of progress in their relationship. The chapter also argues that despite such signs of progress, both legal domains share problematic subject-object relations tending towards environmental degradation and linked to historical patterns of oppression. Once such subject-object relations are addressed, it might be possible, with sufficient imagination, for such understanding to become the departure point for a reconfigured relationship between the two legal domains – and ultimately, for their transformation.

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