As discussed below, there are also many sub-categories of treaties based on the type of environmental concern or prevention of certain types of deterioration or liabilities for pollution.
The following list provides essential resources for uncovering national laws, more specifically, for international environmental law: Before researching primary law, such as treaties and agreements and laws of the nations of the world, researchers might also consult their library catalog to uncover helpful treatises, books, or nutshells and basic background texts to better understand this area of international law.
The following search terms and Library of Congress subject headings are successful when researching library catalogs: In addition to the above categories, which are not comprehensive but give the researcher a head start, it is useful to search terms in the title of the international environmental agreement of focus or also search sub-topics of international environmental law.
When decisions and collaborations occur between nations across international boundaries and treaties or agreements are made to cooperate for environmental concerns, disputes inevitably transpire because of trade implications for the respective nations, safety concerns and cleanliness of environmental resources among shared borders, or problems with enforcement mechanisms for liability under agreements or treaty provisions relating to the environment.
The vastness of this area of international law includes the environmental sub-issues of population, biodiversity, global climate change, ozone depletion, preserving the Antarctic regions, movement of toxic and hazardous substances, land or vessel-based pollution, dumping, conservation of marine living resources, trans-boundary air and water pollution, desertification, and nuclear damage, among others.
PDF Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (2001) International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (1973) & 1978 Protocol (“MARPOL”) *International Convention Relating to Intervention on the High Seas in Cases of Oil Pollution Casualties (1969) and Protocol (1973) International Convention on Civil Liability for Bunker Oil Pollution Damage (2001) International Convention on Civil Liability for Oil Pollution Damage (1969) & Protocols of 1976, 1984, 1992, and 2000 Amendments *Minamata Convention on Mercury (2013) Persistant Organic Pollutants website (Stockholm Convention) / Convention / National Implementation Plans / .
PDF ENTRI: Environmental Treaties and Resource Indicators (1973/1978) / IMO website / Status of IMO Conventions IMO website / ENTRI: Environmental Treaties and Resource Indicators / .In the United States and depending on other jurisdictions for research, a researcher would also need to consult Treaties in Force, Treaty Actions/TIAS, and the Department of State’s website for international agreements reported under the Case-Zablocki Act.The following list of indexes and helpful online collections is not exhaustive, but the list includes comprehensive portals for international environmental legal research: In addition to locating the appropriate treaties and agreements for research in international environmental law, a researcher then needs to uncover any national laws of the foreign nations involved in a research question.This guide will provide an overview of the key terms, general starting points by sub-topic of international environmental law and correlating treaties and agreements, a summary of the essential websites and secondary sources for international environmental legal research, and an approach for researching the primary law of foreign jurisdictions for this topic.Finally, an overview of the prominent international organizations and correlating documentation produced for international environmental law and blogs for current awareness in this field is provided for a comprehensive overview. Those include treaties, custom, general principles recognized among nations, decisions, and other secondary authority such as the writings of prominent scholars in the field.Historically, the timeline of treaties that are often identified as monumental in the formation of international environmental law include: the Stockholm Conference (1972), UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (“UNCLOS”) (1982), World Conference on Environment and Development (1987), UN Conference on Environment and Development (1992), and the World Summit on Sustainable Development (2002).A helpful overview of international environmental law is provided in International Environmental Law in a Nutshell by Lakshman D. Doran (West 2012) for those researchers unfamiliar with this area of international law.Heidi Frostestad Kuehl is the Law Library Director and Associate Professor of Law at the Northern Illinois University College of Law’s David C. She holds a Law degree from Valparaiso University School of Law with a specialization in International Trade and Development and a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from the University of Iowa.International environmental law is an ever-changing, constantly expanding, and intriguing topic for international legal research.PDF / Status List (UN) Ramsar Convention on the Wetlands Website / Status of Ratification (UNESCO) / Status of Ratifications (Ramsar) / Convention on Wetlands Text with Amendments PDF / UN General Assembly Conference Report Committee for Environmental Protection: Antarctic Treaty / Antarctic Treaty Secretariat / . PDF (Protocol) / Dep’t of State (Depositary) / Handbook of the Antarctic Treaty System / Protocol *Convention on Int’l Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora [“CITES”] (1973) *North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation [“NAAEC”] (1993) Aarhus Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters (1998) CITES Official Documents, Appendices I, II, and III, and Reservations Entered by Parties / Notifications to the Parties / Switzerland Dep’t of Foreign Affairs (Depositary) Commission for Environmental Cooperation/ SICE: Foreign Trade Information System (OAS) United Nations Economic Commission for Europe / Parties and Signatories / . ** - Dates referenced are the date of signature of the treaties.There are numerous treaty indexes for historical U. treaties, as well as world treaty series for international environmental legal research.