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Global Environmental Problems and International Environmental Agreements

The Economics of International Institution Building Timothy M. Swanson, Centre for International Environmental Studies, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland and Sam Johnston, formerly Professor, United Nations University, Japan
The ozone layer is threatened by chemical emissions, the climate is endangered from fossil fuels and deforestation, and global biodiversity is being lost by reason of thousands of years of habitat conversions. Global environmental problems arise out of the accumulated impacts from many years’and many countries’ economic development. In order to address these problems the states of the world must cooperate to manage their development processes together – this is what international environmental agreements are designed to do. But can the world’s countries cooperate successfully to manage global development? How should they manage it? Who should pay for the process, as well as for the underlying problems?
In Association with UNCTAD
Extent: 304 pp
Paperback Price: $42.00 Web: $33.60
Publication Date: 2000
ISBN: 978 1 84064 465 4
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  • Economics and Finance
  • Environmental Economics
  • Environment
  • Environmental Economics
  • Environmental Law
  • Environmental Sociology
  • Law - Academic
  • Environmental Law
The ozone layer is threatened by chemical emissions, the climate is endangered from fossil fuels and deforestation, and global biodiversity is being lost by reason of thousands of years of habitat conversions. Global environmental problems arise out of the accumulated impacts from many years’
and many countries’ economic development. In order to address these problems the states of the world must cooperate to manage their development processes together – this is what international environmental agreements are designed to do. But can the world’s countries cooperate successfully to manage global development? How should they manage it? Who should pay for the process, as well as for the underlying problems?

This book presents an examination of both the problems and the processes underlying international environmental lawmaking: the recognition of international interdependence, the negotiation of international agreements and the evolution of international resource management. It examines the general problem of global resource management by means of general principles and case studies and by looking at how and why specific negotiations and agreements have failed to achieve their targets.

The book, commissioned by UNCTAD to assist policymakers, especially in developing countries. It will also be of interest to practitioners in the areas of environmental economics and law and to scholars studying global environmental policy making and institution building.
‘This book is important reading for economists and other social scientists and administrators interested in international environmental agreements and their implementation.’
– Raymond Mikesell, The Economic Journal

‘Negotiating international environmental regimes is traditionally viewed as a task for lawyers and diplomats. This study – commissioned by the secretariat of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development – takes a fresh look, through an economist’s lens.’
– Peter H. Sand, Environment

‘The presentation of the economic material is first-rate, one of the best summaries of the field that I have read. The writing is clear and crisp, and the theory is leavened with wonderfully instructive examples . . . The book is likely to be the seminal piece in this area.’
– Thomas S. Ulen, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, US
Contents: Preface Part I: The Economics of Global Environmental Problems 1. The Limits to Growth 2. Planning for Future Generations 3. Global Development and Global Externalities 4. Relations between Nations Part II: Developing International Environmental Law 5. The Foundations of International Environmental Law 6. Economics of International Environmental Agreements 7. Negotiating International Environmental Agreements 8. The Evolution of International Environmental Agreements 9. Developing International Environmental Law Part III: Principles of International Environmental Law and Lawmaking 10. Principles of International Environmental Law Bibliography Index