Category Archives: Health

Unraveling the Nagoya Protocol: A Commentary on the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit-sharing to the Convention on Biological Diversity (E. Morgera et al.)

Author(s)

Elisa Morgera, Elsa Tsioumani, Matthias Buck

Keywords

access, benefit-sharing, environmental sustainability, sustainable development, international law, human rights, intellectual property rights, health, food, oceans

Abstract

The Nagoya Protocol on access and benefit-sharing is an international environmental agreement that concerns environmental sustainability, other sustainable development issues and equity. It addresses a complex subject matter that affects a range of research, development and commercial activities and is relevant to different areas of international law such as human rights, intellectual property rights, health, food and oceans.

Unraveling the Nagoya Protocol identifies textual, contextual and systemic interpretative questions and suggests solutions that aim to give a coherent and balanced meaning to the text of the Protocol. Offering a systematic discussion of the Protocol’s legal innovations against the background of general international law, this commentary aims to be of use to international biodiversity law scholars and practitioners, as well as to international lawyers that approach access and benefit-sharing for the first time

Citation

E. Morgera et al. 2014. Unraveling the Nagoya Protocol: A Commentary on the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit-sharing to the Convention on Biological Diversity. Martinus Nijhoff.

Paper

Unraveling the Nagoya Protocol: A Commentary on the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit-sharing to the Convention on Biological Diversity

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The Implicit Constitutional Right to Live in a Healthy Environment (D. R. Boyd)

Author

David R. Boyd

Keywords

constitutional rights, healthy environment, environmental rights, human rights

Abstract

The right to a healthy environment has rapidly gained constitutional protection around the world. In at least twenty countries, recognition of the right to a healthy environment first occurred through court decisions determining that it is implicit in other constitutional provisions, primarily the right to life. The right is now recognized explicitly in the constitutions of 90 countries spanning Europe, Asia, Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa, and is recognized as an implicit and enforceable constitutional right in at least twelve additional countries. The decisions of international courts and tribunals provide further support for concluding that the right to life necessarily includes the right to a healthy environment.

Citation

(2011) 20 Review of European Community & International Environmental Law 171

Paper

The Implicit Constitutional Right to Live in a Healthy Environment

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Scrutinizing the Impact of GMOs Through the Prism of Human Rights (R. Patowary)

Author

Rashmi Patowary

Keywords

Earth Jurisprudence, Food, Genetically Modified Organisms, Health, Human Rights

Abstract

Necessity is the mother of invention. The booming population triggered the need to carve out efficient ways to feed the growing millions. Biotechnology answered this need with the creation of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs). They are organisms whose genetic make up has been altered using genetic engineering techniques. Such alterations enabled to create agricultural products (both plants and animals) that were resistant to diseases, harsh seasonal changes and had better nutritional qualities. Thus, it improved food both in quantitative and qualitative terms. But under the garb of these numerous benefits, one should not ignore the potential risks, which these organisms pose to the human health and the environment at large. GMOs provide a risk to human health as it can cause allergic reactions. It also causes significant loss to biodiversity and dismantle the sensitive balance of a food chain.

Human Rights, the inalienable rights bestowed to mankind, preserving its dignity and sanctity faces dilemma in the midst of the benefits and risks of GMOs. The human right to ‘foodand the human right to ‘health’ are quite relevant in this context. For instance, the benefit of condensing better nutritional qualities in food through the creation of GMOs apparently seems to protect the right to food. But, taking note of the possible threats of allergic reactions (the nature and gravity of which, is not known) and loss to biodiversity, may pose a long-term hidden challenge to the human right to health. Furthermore, human beings are an entity of the ever-changing and mysterious nature. The health and strength of our lives are connected to that of the earth. Thus, a loss of biodiversity and disruption of the sensitive food chain will also have repercussions on our right to food as well. The triggering of genetic mutation will also have effects upon other living organisms, which challenges the greater cohesion inherent in nature. This paper makes a humble attempt to study and analyze subtle but pertinent observations.

The Cartegena Protocol is the first and main international legal instrument regarding biosafety. It broadly covers protection of biodiversity and to regulate the manufacture, import and export of GMO based food products. It emphasis upon the concept of precautionary principle and introduces ‘labeling’ of food containing GMOs. The paper attempts to search solutions and evaluate the efficacy of solutions in existence in the International Legal Framework. The paper will also briefly evaluate the efficacy and efficiency of domestic legislations of India with regard to biosafety. It will try to analyze and evaluate the scales of justice in the light of earth jurisprudence.

Citation

(2014) 07/06 OIDA International Journal of Sustainable Development 79-86

Paper

Scrutinizing the Impact of GMOs Through the Prism of Human Rights

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Solidarity after Bhopal: Building a Transnational Environmental Justice Movement (R. Pariyadath and R. Shadaan)

Authors

Renu Pariyadath, Reena Shadaan

Keywords

Bhopal, Environmental Justice, India, Solidarity, Transnational Environmental Justice Movement

Abstract

Environmental Justice is the essential peer-reviewed journal that explores the equitable treatment of all people, especially minority and low-income populations, with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies. Published bimonthly

Citation

(2014) 7(5) Environmental Justice 146-150

Paper

Solidarity after Bhopal: Building a Transnational Environmental Justice Movement

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Gandhi’s Nightmare: Bhopal and the Need for a Mindful Jurisprudence (N. A. Patel, K. Petlakh)

Authors

Nehal A. Patel and Ksenia Petlakh

Keywords

mindful, legal theory, non-western, Gandhi, jurisprudence, transnational, international, human rights, environment, corporation, industrial

Abstract

For decades, activists and academics have been lamenting the disparate impact of global environmental decay on populations less endowed with legal resources. However, the implicit biases of legal theory itself remain unchallenged even when global resource disparities are addressed. Little attention has been given in transnational jurisprudence to how the thought sub structures of modern legal theory contain dispositions that advantage privileged interests and hamper transnational environmental justice efforts.

How can transnational jurisprudence change to become more mindful of the environmental impacts disproportionately experienced by the disempowered, and what conception of global society shall the law embody such that it earns the voluntary submission of the people? We explore these questions with a speculation on how Gandhi’s thought applies to transnational environmental jurisprudence. Gandhi’s thought contains four components that contain the necessary ingredients to evaluate the dominant frames that debilitate global environmental justice efforts. First, Gandhi presented his own construction of the individual’s relationship to the physical and social environments. Second, Gandhi’s thought defines the relationships between societies in a way that is free of Western assumptions of global governance. Third, his thought contains a critique of industrialization and presents a powerful alternative. Fourth, his thought contains a reconstruction of the purpose and function of law and legal systems for a world in which “progress” includes social equality and environmental protection. Comprehensively, Gandhi’s thought reinvigorates a decayed relationship between global environmental justice and transnational environmental jurisprudence by simultaneously redefining the human-environment relationship, legal theory, and dominant Western assumptions of the relationships between nations.

We directly apply Gandhi’s thought to the case law that resulted from the Bhopal chemical disaster, which is widely considered the worst industrial disaster in world history. Applying Gandhi’s thought to the Bhopal cases is useful for two reasons. First, the Bhopal cases contain several core legal doctrines that appear regularly in transnational cases. Second, there is a profound power imbalance between the civilians and the corporation that highlights the case’s relevance to global environmental justice. Through our analysis of the legal principles and the parties’ arguments in this case law, we illustrate our conception of a mindful jurisprudence of the transnational environment.

Citation

N. A. Patel and K. Petlakh, Gandhi’s Nightmare: Bhopal and the Need for a Mindful Jurisprudence (2014) Vol. 30, Harvard Journal on Racial & Ethnic Justice

Paper

Gandhi’s Nightmare: Bhopal and the Need for a Mindful Jurisprudence

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