Equilibrium within International
Economic and Environmental Laws
The implications of international economic law for transferring environment-friendly technologies and protecting non-economic values have become a major concern in governing economic relations around the world. In the last decades, the international environmental laws have had noteworthy influence on international economic law. It is vitally important that the industrialised countries actively play their role to decrease carbon footprints on the planet.
The world’s surface temperature is rapidly increasing due to the indiscriminate emission of carbon gas. As a result, many countries are at stake for rising sea levels. Therefore, the whole ecosystem of the earth is suffering in the long run. The industrialised and developed countries that emit carbon gas mostly have shown their concern over the environment skipping the problem of increasing carbon gas, marine pollution and air pollution. However, some countries refuse to regulate carbon emission for economic reasons.
In the last years, international economic law has seen the integration of economic rights, environmental concerns and sustainable development goals within its broad spectrum. The developing countries are mostly sufferers of climate change. Only ensuring economic development cannot be the main objective of international economic law. Rather, it must encompass sustainable development.
Moreover, natural resources are essential public goods that must be used sustainably. International economic law has started considering environmental issues because sustainable development is impossible without balancing business objectives with environmental concerns. Hence, the international trade and investment laws are being amended keeping in mind the need for environmental safeguard. Any kinds of productivity which are malefic for the environment are being minimised. As part of climate protection, the Vienna Convention and the Montreal Protocol have obligated their parties to rebuff the creation of carbon dioxide gas. Furthermore, the Kyoto Protocol has separated the duties of the States. Under the Paris Agreement, the developed countries have obligations to provide financial support to the developing countries suffering from climate change. On the other hand, the Convention on Biological Diversity has created a check and balance between the protection of biodiversity and the economic use of natural resources. It creates equilibrium within environmental and economic interests.
For boosting the future economy in a sustainable way, a long-term plan for making environment-friendly investment is essential where the stakeholders must work jointly. There is no doubt that the New International Economic Order (NIEO) is a better platform for attaining environmental as well as economic goals. It has provided the countries freedom over their natural resources and economic activities where it is ensured that economic development must be continued sustainably. On the other hand, the Financial Stability Board (FSB), an international body for monitoring the international financial system, has formed a Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) for reporting climate-related financial information. It helps to provide authentic and high-quality information on the effects of climate change which is essential for decision-making. In the case of Philippines v China (South China Sea Arbitration), the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) stated that large parts of the shallow reef area in the South China Sea had been permanently destroyed and the remaining areas were at stake. In the arbitration, it was revealed that the activities of China for economic purposes had violated environmental law.
The indiscriminate rising of sea levels, floods, drought and cyclones have made many countries more vulnerable to climate change-induced, long-term consequences. For this reason, specifically, the fisheries sector is experiencing an adverse effect. Many entrepreneurs of this sector are losing their capital and laborers are losing jobs. In a report published by Statista, it is seen that the US emits 14.24 metric tons of carbon gas per year, whereas Australia emits 15.37 metric tons and China emits 07.41 metric tons. Although, COP26 which was held in Glasgow made the Glasgow Climate Pact for the world that included emergency cuts of greenhouse gas emissions and assured more climate finance for the developing countries to cope with climate change, using green-tech solutions and transforming the existing industries to green can create the opportunity to build a greener and more sustainable global economy. So, equilibrium within the international economic and environmental laws can protect the world economy from the curse of climate change.
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