Institutionalized review processes of the adequacy of commitments in international environmental agreements

1997 1997

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Abstract (summary)

The central objective of the study is to assess whether the various review mechanisms of the adequacy of commitments contained in international environmental agreements have facilitated diplomatic processes towards more effective solutions to environment problems, and if so, how and under what conditions. The effectiveness of an environmental treaty is considered to be whether it contributes to solving the environmental problem which prompted the Parties to negotiate it. The components of effectiveness can be broadly divided into issues of implementation (sue the Parties doing what they have agreed to do?) and adequacy (are the commitments that the Parties have agreed to capable of solving the problem?). This study examines review mechanisms to address this second aspect of effectiveness which serve to address scientific uncertainty in environmental negotiations.

Presently, there are six environmental treaties which contain such review mechanisms. They are: 1987 Montreal Protocol, the 1988 Nitrogen Oxides Protocol, the 1989 Basel Convention, the 1991 Volatile Organic Compounds Protocol, the 1992 Climate Change Convention, and the 1994 Sulphur Protocol. Each of these treaties is examined to describe the history of each treaty and the institutional and legal elements supporting the review processes, to explain how the review processes have functioned and what their results have been, and to assess the extent to which each of the review processes has helped to revise the commitments in their respective treaties to make them more effective.

The effectiveness of these review mechanisms has varied from case to case. To explain why, this study compares the political for a, environmental objectives, scientific assessment processes, review mandates, and decision-making and revision procedures. It then suggests an ideal set of legal and institutional provisions to ensure the efficacy of review processes of the adequacy of commitments and identifies several environmental treaty negotiations where these lessons can be applied. Finally, it reflects on the incremental development of international environmental law and the contribution of review processes of the adequacy of commitments to the effectiveness of international environmental agreements.

Indexing (details)

International law;
International relations;
Environmental science
0616: International law
0616: International relations
0398: Law
0768: Environmental science
Identifier / keyword
Health and environmental sciences; Social sciences
Institutionalized review processes of the adequacy of commitments in international environmental agreements
Deutz, Andrew M.
Number of pages
Publication year
Degree date
School code
DAI-A 58/03, Dissertation Abstracts International
Place of publication
Ann Arbor
Country of publication
United States
9780591359244, 0591359243
Rubin, Afred P.
Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (Tufts University)
University location
United States -- Massachusetts
Source type
Dissertations & Theses
Document type
Dissertation/thesis number
ProQuest document ID
Database copyright ProQuest LLC; ProQuest does not claim copyright in the individual underlying works.
Document URL
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