International Criminal Court photo: Michael Veenman
One of the prime problems with any international environmental agreement, beyond getting nations to actually ratify it, is enforcement. It’s difficult enough domestically—a lawsuit against the Canadian government for failing to meet its Kyoto Protocol commitments went nowhere fast—and internationally its even worse. There simply isn’t an international body which has specific authority to enforce international environmental regulations. If the former head of Britain’s Bar Council has his way, such a body would be created to do just that: Would Be Able to Issue Fines to Enforce International Environmental Commitments
The Telegraph s reporting that such a body would be similar to the International Court of Justice in The Hague, and would be responsible for enforcing international environmental agreements such as whatever post-Kyoto climate change agreement is reached, agreements on protection of endangered species, or issuing fines to companies or countries which break other environmental protection laws.
In proposing the court, Mr Hockman said,
Of course regulations and sanctions alone cannot deliver a global solution to problems of climate change, but without such components the incentive for individual countries to address those problems—and to achieve solutions that are politically acceptable within their own jurisdictions—will be much reduced.
Enforcement May Be Difficult, But Such a Court is Needed
Personally I think the idea is a good one, even if enforcing rulings, particularly against powerful nations such as the United States (should it choose to participate...more likely under an Obama administration), could be difficult. As so many environmental issues have transboundary effects, even if the source of the problem and the solution to it are confined to a single nation, an independent international enforcement body would go a long way towards dealing with these issues.
via: The Telegraph
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