Risk, Resilience, Inequality and Environmental Law
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Risk, Resilience, Inequality and Environmental Law

Edited by Bridget M. Hutter

This insightful book considers how the law has adapted to the environmental challenges of the 21st Century and the ways in which it might be used to cope with environmental risks and uncertainties whilst promoting resilience and greater equality. These issues are considered in social context by contributors from different disciplines who examine some of the experiments tried in different parts of the world to govern the environment, improve the available legal tools and give voice to more diverse groups.
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Chapter 3: Resilience in environmental law: epistemic limitations and the role of participation

Ole W. Pedersen

Abstract

Against a background of intense scholarly focus on and regulatory interest in the concept of resilience, this chapter considers the extent to which it is possible to deliberately design and embed features of resilience into environmental law and regulation. The chapter argues that, upon closer scrutiny, some of the characteristics most often associated with resilience are indeed already present in much of modern UK environmental law. Importantly, however, this is best explained not by reference to deliberate design features of the law, but by reference to the ad hoc and often piecemeal development of the law. In response to this, the chapter considers the ways in which public participation mechanisms – prominent in much of modern environmental law – may serve as a more useful avenue for embedding reliance in the law.

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