Tag Archives: policy

The Metrics of Constitutional Amendments: And Why Proposed Constitutional Amendments Don’t Add Up (J. B. Ruhl)

Author(s)

J.B. Ruhl

Keywords

constitutional law, environmental law, environmental rights, rights to environmental quality, policy, politics, environmental policy, United States Constitution

Abstract

None Available

Citation

(1999) 74 Notre Dame Law Review 245

Paper

The Metrics of Constitutional Amendments: And Why Proposed Constitutional Amendments Don’t Add Up

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Constitutionalizing the Environment: The History and Future of Montana’s Environmental Provisions (B. Thompson)

Author

Barton H. Thompson Jr.

Keywords

environmental provisions, Montana, constitutional law, environmental rights, environmentalism, policy, environmental law

Extract

Part I of this Article provides general background on environmental policy provisions in state constitutions, including the Montana Constitution. Part I also includes an overview of how the Montana Supreme Court has interpreted the Montana provisions to date. Part II then examines how environmental
groups and interested citizens may try to use the environmental provisions in future cases and asks the tough questions that the Montana Supreme Court will need to face in those cases. With both the opportunities and problems of “constitutionalizing” the environment in mind, Part III briefly concludes by reconsidering the fundamental wisdom of including self-executing environmental policy provisions in a state constitution.

Citation

(2003) 64 Montana Law Review 157

Paper

Constitutionalizing the Environment: The History and Future of Montana’s Environmental Provisions

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Suma qamaña in Bolivia Indigenous Understandings of Well-being and Their Contribution to a Post-Neoliberal Paradigm (K. Artaraz and M. Calestani)

Author(s)

Kepa Artaraz and Melania Calestani

Keywords

well-being, policy, constitution, Bolivia, sustainability, Law of Mother Earth, National Development Plan, indigenous rights, legislation

Abstract

English:

In recent decades there has been increasing interest in academic, governmental, and nongovernmental circles worldwide in developing universal definitions of well-being. Governments have progressively shifted their policies on this concept and are currently engaged in improving the well-being of their populations. Bolivia’s concept of suma qamaña (living well together) is broader than “well-being,” emphasizing the importance of harmonious relations between nature and human beings and providing an important link to sustainability that current conceptions of well-being fail to make. Exploring the concept is highly relevant at this historical moment because the Morales government is engaged in a wide-ranging process of social transformation to implement it. Its translation into public policy and the adoption of a development model consistent with it have proved problematic. While the introduction of the concept into the National Development Plan, the new constitution, and the Law of Mother Earth has addressed the need to move from individualized understandings of well-being to collective ones, the government has not overcome the conflict between growth-driven approaches and sustainability that is inherent in all its legislation. Moreover, understandings of the concept are constantly being negotiated and transformed, calling for an understanding of it that is rooted in people’s practices and beliefs rather than in theoretical constructions.

Spanish:

En las últimas décadas ha habido un creciente interés en los círculos académicos, gubernamentales y no gubernamentales de todo el mundo en el desarrollo de las definiciones universales de bienestar. Los gobiernos han cambiado progresivamente sus políticas en este concepto y se dedican actualmente a la mejora del bienestar de sus poblaciones. Concepto de suma qamaña (vivir bien) de Bolivia es más amplio que el “bienestar,” enfatizando la importancia de las relaciones armoniosas entre la naturaleza y los seres humanos y proporcionando un vínculo importante con la sostenibilidad que las concepciones actuales de bienestar no pueden hacer. Explorar el concepto es muy relevante en este momento histórico, porque el gobierno de Morales está involucrado en un amplio proceso de transformación social para implementarla. Su traslación en las políticas públicas y la adopción de un modelo de desarrollo coherente con ella han demostrado ser problemático. Si bien la introducción de este concepto en el Plan Nacional de Desarrollo, la nueva Constitución, y la Ley de la Madre Tierra ha abordado la necesidad de pasar de entendimientos individuales de bienestar a los colectivos, el gobierno no ha superado el conflicto entre los enfoques impulsados por crecimiento y la sostenibilidad que es inherente a toda su legislación. Por otra parte, las comprensiones del concepto están siendo constantemente negociados y transformados, reclamando una comprensión que está enraizada en las prácticas y creencias de las personas y no en las construcciones teóricas.

Citation

(2015) Latin American Perspectives 42 (5) 216-233

Paper

Suma qamaña in Bolivia Indigenous Understandings of Well-being and Their Contribution to a Post-Neoliberal Paradigm

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Climate Change Adaptation and the Structural Transformation of Environmental Law (J. B. Ruhl)

Author(s)

J. B. Ruhl

Keywords

climate change, environmental law, greenhouse gas emissions, adaptation, mitigation, policy, pollution, land law, decision methods, regulation, conciliation

Abstract

The path of environmental law has come to a cliff called climate change, and there is no turning around. As climate change policy dialogue emerged in the 1990s, however, the perceived urgency of attention to mitigation strategies designed to regulate sources of greenhouse gas emissions quickly snuffed out meaningful progress on the formulation of adaptation strategies designed to respond to the effects of climate change on humans and the environment. Only recently has this “adaptation deficit” become a concern now actively included in climate change policy debate. Previously treating talk of adaptation as taboo, the climate change policy world has begrudgingly accepted it into the fold as the reality of failed efforts to achieve global mitigation policy has combined with the scientific evidence that committed warming will continue the trend of climate change well into the future regardless of mitigation policy success.

But do not expect adaptation policy to play out for environmental law the way mitigation policy has and is likely to continue. Mitigation policy has been framed as an initiative primarily within the domain of environmental law – a form of pollution control on steroids – and thus it will be environmental law that makes the first move and other policy realms that apply support or pushback. By contrast, environmental law does not “own” adaptation policy; rather, numerous policy fronts will compete simultaneously for primacy and priority as people demand protection from harms and enjoyment of benefits that play out as climate change moves relentlessly forward. This makes it all the more pressing for environmental law, early in the nation’s formulation of adaptation policy, to find its voice and establish its place in the effort to close the adaptation deficit.

Toward that purpose, this Article examines the context and policy dynamics of climate change adaptation and identifies ten trends that will have profound normative and structural impacts on how environmental law fits in: 1) Shift in emphasis from preservationism to transitionalism in natural resources conservation policy. 2) Rapid evolution of property rights and liability rules associated with natural capital adaptation resources. 3) Accelerated merger of water law, land use law, and environmental law. 4) Incorporation of a human rights dimension in climate change adaptation policy. 5) Catastrophe and crisis avoidance and management as an overarching adaptation policy priority. 6) Frequent reconfigurations of trans-policy linkages and trade-offs at all scales and across scales. 7) Shift from “front end” decision methods relying on robust predictive capacity to “back end” decision methods relying on active adaptive management. 8) Greater variety and flexibility in regulatory instruments 9) Increased reliance on multi-scalar governance networks. 10) Conciliation.

Citation

(2009) 40 Environmental Law 343

Paper

Climate Change Adaptation and the Structural Transformation of Environmental Law

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A Human Rights-Based Approach to Climate Change (M. Orellana)

Author(s)

Marcos A. Orellana

Keywords

Human rights, Climate Change, Training, Education, International Human Rights Law, Policy, Development, Adaptation, Mitigation, Capacity Building

Excerpt

Introduction

This paper explores human rights standards and mechanisms
relevant to addressing climate change, with a focus on human
rights training and education. It also discusses how climate change
policies and measures can affect a wide range of human rights
recognized by international human rights law. Additionally, this
paper analyzes how a human rights-based approach can help to
integrate human rights standards into climate change policy and
development cooperation to achieve effective and equitable implementation of human rights. Finally, it concludes that human rights training and education effectively contribute to the development of capacities, for both rights-holders and duty-bearers; ensure a basic understanding of human rights law; and, integrate human rights standards into climate change policy.

This paper first discusses the human rights-based approach to
development and climate change respectively. Next, it analyzes how
a wide range of human rights are affected by the physical impacts of
climate change as well as by adaptation and mitigation measures.
Then it will discuss the importance of the linkages between human
rights and climate change for the purposes of addressing human
rights violations caused by climate change; protecting the human
rights of vulnerable groups; and, facilitating international cooperation in protecting human rights from climate change. Finally, the paper concludes that human rights training and education can contribute to achieving the effective and equitable realization of human rights in the face of climatic uncertainties.

Citation

(2012) The Human Rights-Based Approach: A Field of Action for Human Rights Education, pp53-63 (Geneva: Cifedhop)

Paper

A Human Rights-Based Approach to Climate Change

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