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The Atmosphere And International Environmental Law

6433 words - 26 pages

In the past few decades the climate of our planet has been stressed by increasing energy demands that have arisen, because of the global population explosion and the expansion of industry. It is our objective to increase awareness about the international laws and regulations regarding the atmosphere. We can achieve this goal by:

- Mapping and understanding of: the relationships between atmospheric laws, and the relationships between the most prominent atmospheric treaties.

- Presenting the future, which involves a rise in global temperatures and the consequences of this change.

- Discussing the position of developing states, which requires an understanding that: developing states wish to be involved in climate conventions, but factions have arisen within the developing world about the extent of their responsibility and their relationship with the developed world.

- Finally, by understanding the role of developed countries and the problems they have faced in achieving organization: collectively, and with developing countries. This includes a brief discussion about state dedication to regulations, and roles in enforcement.

International Environmental law got a slow start in the beginning of the twentieth century. The first environmental laws were about the use of shared waterways. These first laws focused more on commercial rights and not ecological issues. The first ecologically friendly laws were designed for the protection of chosen wild animals and birds, such as the 1902 Convention for the Protection of birds Useful to Agriculture, and the 1911 Treaty for the Preservation and Protection of Fur Seals.

In 1909 the United States and the United Kingdom signed a Boundary Water Treaty, which created precedence for International Environmental Law. The two states agreed that water “shall not be polluted on either side to the injury of health or property on the other.” As the century neared the middle, larger groups of flora and fauna began to fall under protection.

The International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling started protection of the global commons.

The Atmosphere was the last biome to be addressed in International Environmental law. In was first addressed internationally in the International Court of Justice (IJC) Trail Smelter Case between the United States and Canada. This case was instrumental to International Environmental Law in that it created a principle that a state is responsible for environmental damages to foreign countries caused by activities with in its borders.

The United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) organized the 1972 UN Stockholm conference on the Human Environment. This Conference is considered to be the start of modern International Law because at the Stockholm conference the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) was created.

In 1972 the world population was 3.84 billion and 72 percent lived in developing...

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