Category Archives: Public/Private Divide

Environmental Technologies, Intellectual Property and Climate Change (ed. Abbe E. L. Brown)

Editor

Abbe E.L. Brown

Keywords

development studies, law and development, environment, climate change, innovation and technology, technology and ict, academic law, environmental law, human rights, intellectual property law, law and development, politics and public policy, human rights

Abstract

Many disciplines are relevant to combating climate change. This challenging book draws together legal, regulatory, geographic, industrial and professional perspectives and explores the role of technologies in addressing climate change through mitigation, adaptation and information gathering. It explores some key issues. Is intellectual property part of the solution, an obstacle to change or peripheral? Are there more important questions? Do they receive the attention they deserve? And from whom? This innovative book will play an important role in stimulating holistic discussion and action on an issue of key importance to society.

1. Low carbon futures for all? Strategic options for global availability of environmental technologies 29 Keith Culver

2. The puzzling persistence of the intellectual property right/climate change relationship 59 Navraj Singh Ghaleigh

3. Failure is not an option: enhancing the use of intellectual property tools to secure wider and more equitable access to climate change technologies 84 Jon P. Santamauro

4. Partnership and sharing: beyond mainstream mechanisms 108 Anna Davies

5. Public–private partnerships for wider and equitable access to climate technologies 128 Elisa Morgera and Kati Kulovesi

6. Climate change, technology transfer and intellectual property rights: a modest exercise in thinking outside the box 152 Krishna Ravi Srinivas

7. Access to essential environmental technologies and poor communities: why human rights should be prioritized 181 Oche Onazi

8. Achieving greater access: a new role for established legal principles? 198 Abbe E.L. Brown

9. The ‘new normal’: food, climate change and intellectual property 223 Baskut Tuncak

10. Intellectual property: property rights and the public interest 249 James McLean

11. A view from inside the renewable energy industry 265 Mervyn D. Jones

12. A private institutional investment perspective 271 David A. McGrory

Citation

2013. Environmental Technologies, Intellectual Property and Climate Change, ed. Abbe E. L. Brown. Cheltenham: Elgar.

Paper

Environmental Technologies, Intellectual Property and Climate Change

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Workers’ Rights and Pollution Control in Delhi (K.D. Alley & D. Meadows)

Authors

K.D. Alley & D. Meadows

Keywords

Human Rights, Environmental Rights, Constitutional Law, India, Right to a Clean Environment, Pollution

Abstract

Within India’s judicial interpretation of constitutional rights there exists a close link between environmental values and human rights. Yet in some instances court cases defending the right to a clean environment have actually jeopardized the job security of India’s poorest laborers and have led to abuses of human rights. One such example is the 1995 Supreme Court case MC Mehta v. Union of India, which ordered the closure and relocation of polluting industries in Delhi. In this instance the Court responded to middle-class appeals for pollution remediation through a broad reading of the constitution’s fundamental right to life principle, at the same time adversely affecting tens, even hundreds, of thousands of the city’s poorest workers.

The spotty interest of the government’s legislative and executive branches in addressing the environmental problems created by both private and public sector development initiatives has provided the impetus for legal activism in India. Parliament has enacted environmental legislation, but enforcement has been profoundly lax, and governmental pollution control boards have been lenient in regulating industrial and vehicular emissions and industrial and municipal waste treatment facilities. Moreover, projects involving air and water pollution, massive human displacement, and the destruction of natural ecosystems continue to go forward with the imprimatur of formal administrative approval, based on only perfunctory or formalistic compliance with regulatory norms.

Citation

(2004) 11 Human Rights Dialogue 15

Paper

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Environmental Law Dimensions of Human Rights (B. Boer ed)

Editor(s)

Ben Boer

Keywords

environmental rights, private sector, Multinational Corporations, Inter-American Court, European Court, Asia-Pacific, climate displacement

Abstract

How can we guarantee a right to life or a right to health without also guaranteeing a decent environment in which to exercise these rights? It is becoming increasingly obvious that a high quality environment is key to the fundamental human rights of life and health, and associated rights such as the right to clean water, adequate housing, and food.

This book canvasses a range of law and policy issues concerning human rights and the environment. Each chapter examines an aspect of the links between environmental law and human rights in substantive and/or procedural terms, loosely falling into four themes: human rights and the environment in the context of the private sector; analysis of decisions of the European and Inter-American courts in respect of substantive and procedural aspects; human rights and the environment in the Asian region, including the issue of human displacement; and the future direction of human rights and environment law.

Citation

(2015) Oxford University Press

Paper

Environmental Law Dimensions of Human Rights 

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The Power of Rights: Imposing Human Rights Duties on Transnational Corporations for Environmental Harms (A. Sinden)

Author

Amy Sinden

Keywords

Human Rights, Environmental Wrongs, Transnational Corporations, Civil and Political Rights, Public/Private Divide

Abstract

This essay attempts to construct a normative justification for the imposition of human rights duties on transnational corporations (TNCs) that commit environmental wrongs in the developing world. Under the now near-hegemonic worldview of welfare economics, TNCs are analogised to individuals competing in the marketplace and thus placed squarely on the private side of the public/private divide. If we step outside of the economic worldview, however, and recognise the extent to which the normative justifications for civil and political human rights have traditionally been rooted in a perceived need to counteract the imbalance of power between the individual and the state, it becomes clear that it is frequently far more appropriate to treat TNCs as like states than like individuals. Many TNCs, after all, wield more power and resources than many states. Accordingly, at least where one of two sets of factual circumstances exist, human rights duties should be imposed directly on TNCs for environmental harms: 1) where the state has become so weak and/or corrupt as to be non-functional, or 2) where the TNC has so much power and influence within the domestic government that it essentially controls state decision-making.

Citation

(2007) in The New Corporate Accountability, D. McBarnet et al. (Eds.)

Paper

The Power of Rights: Imposing Human Rights Duties on Transnational Corporations for Environmental Harms

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Human Rights and the Environment: Problems and Possibilities (D. Shelton)

Author

Dinah Shelton

Keywords

Human Rights, Environmental Protection, Economic Incentives and Disincentives, Regulatory Measures, Criminal law,  Private Liability Regimes

Abstract

In the space of one week in the second half of August, 2007, two non-governmental organizations, an intergovernmental organization, a leading US law school, a major foundation, and the government of a small island developing state all telephoned my office to inquire about taking a rights-based approach to the problem of global climate change. While the linkages between human rights and environmental protection have been increasingly strengthened in the 35 years since the Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment, the calls were evidence that the present concern with climate change has accelerated and broadened consideration of the utility of a rights-based approach to environmental protection. Various analytical constructs can be invoked in law in order to protect the natural world and ecological processes on which life depends: economic incentives and disincentives, regulatory measures, criminal law, and private liability regimes all form part of the framework of international and national environmental law.

Citation

(2008) 38 Environmental Policy and Law 41

Paper

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