Tag 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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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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Environmental Justice and the Rights of Unborn and Future Generations: Law, Environmental Harm and the Right to Health (L. Westra)

Author

Laura Westra, President of the Global Ecological Integrity Group (GEIG)

Keywords

social justice, rights of future generations, environmental justice, law, environmental harm, health, right to health, human rights

Abstract

The traditional concept of social justice is increasingly being challenged by the notion of a human-kind which spans current and future generations. This book is the first systematic examination of how the rights of the unborn and future generations are handled in common law and under international legal instruments. It provides comprehensive coverage of the arguments over international legal instruments, key legal cases and examples including the Convention on the Rights of the Child, industrial disasters, clean water provision, diet, HIV/AIDS, environmental racism and climate change.

The result is the most controversial and thorough examination to date of the subject and the enormous ramifications and challenges it poses to every aspect of international and domestic environmental, human rights, trade and public health law and policy. Also covered are international agreements and objectives as diverse as the Kyoto Protocol, the Millennium Development Goals and international trade.

In many countries, a three-month-old foetus can be aborted – so what does the law say about the poisoning of an unborn child by a toxic spill, HIV infection or the future damage of climate change?This is a powerful book that examines the right of the unborn to health – essential for governments, polluting industries, NGOs and lawyers dealing with pollution, health and the rights of the unborn. It offers a comprehensive coverage of key international legal instruments, cases from Bhopal to Chernobyl, and arguments on environmental harm, justice and the rights of future generations to health.

‘Laura Westra’s book is a welcome addition to the growing body of work on environmental jurisprudence and the link to social justice’ Elizabeth May, Executive Director, Sierra Club of Canada ‘If outrage against social injustice galvanizes your life, Laura Westra’s magisterial Environmental Justice and the Rights of Unborn and Future Generations is the single book you must read and use this year’ Robert Goodland, former Chief Environmental Adviser to the World Bank Group ‘Westra brings another important interdisciplinary perspective on this topic.’ Journal of Human Rights.

Citation

Laura Westra, Environmental Justice and the Rights of Unborn and Future Generations: Law, Environmental Harm and the Right to Health (Earthscan, 2006)

Book

Environmental Justice and the Rights of Unborn and Future Generations: Law, Environmental Harm and the Right to Health

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The New Accountability: Environmental Responsibility Across Borders (M. Mason)

Author(s)

Michael Mason

Keywords

population, accountability, environmental protection, health, ecological sustainability, borders, international agreements, national territories, state responsibility, pollution, transnational corporations

Abstract

The growth of pollution that crosses national borders represents a significant threat to human health and ecological sustainability. Various international agreements exist between countries to reduce risks to their populations, however there is often a mismatch between national territories of state responsibility and transboundary hazards. All too often, state priorities do not correspond to the priorities of the people affected by pollution, who often have little recourse against major polluters, particularly transnational corporations operating across national boundaries. Drawing on case studies, The New Accountability provides a fresh understanding of democratic accountability for transboundary and global harm and argues that environmental responsibility should be established in open public discussions about harm and risk. Most critically it makes the case that, regardless of nationality, affected parties should be able to demand that polluters and harm producers be held accountable for their actions and if necessary provide reparations.

Citation

Michael Mason, The New Accountability: Environmental Responsibility Across Borders (Earthscan, 2005)

Book

The New Accountability: Environmental Responsibility Across Borders

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