50 Ariz. St. L.J. 431 (2018)
Extractive Industries and Inequality: Intersections of Environmental Law, Human Rights, and Environmental Justice

handle is hein.journals/arzjl50 and id is 447 raw text is: 




EXTRACTIVE INDUSTRIES AND INEQUALITY:

Intersections of Environmental Law, Human

Rights, and Environmental Justice

Sumudu Atapattu*


                             INTRODUCTION
   From  Shell Oil in Ogoniland, Nigeria to Chevron in Ecuador, and from
Bhopal, India to Freeport-McMoRan   in Indonesia, the world is replete with
examples  of corporate excesses and impunity. Time and time again we hear
of gross human   rights violations and severe environmental  degradation
associated with multinational corporations operating in developing countries.
Extractive industries are just one category of businesses guilty of these
excesses.
   International law has  long sought  to control the activities of these
multinational companies with little success. Several attempts at adopting hard
law  by the United  Nations  (UN)  were  vetoed by  developed  countries.
International law  does  not technically govern  the  activities of these
companies-they   are not states. However, they operate at the international
level (more  accurately in the grey zone  between  international law and
national law)  and are often  more  influential and powerful than  many
developing  states. This power asymmetry   has resulted in human   rights
violations, environmental degradation, and often impunity for their actions.
At the same time, several movements  have emerged  as a response to these
violations, resulting in many corporations themselves voluntarily accepting
codes of conduct and other standards of behavior. These include corporate
social responsibility,' the Equator Principles,2 and the UN Guiding Principles


   * Director, Research Centers, University of Wisconsin Law School; Lead Counsel, Human
Rights, Center for International Sustainable Development Law and Affiliate Professor, Raoul
Wallenberg Institute for Human Rights, Sweden. The original version of this paper was presented
at the Rapport Center for Human Rights and Justice, University of Texas at Austin in September
2016. The author is grateful to Professor Dan Brinks for the invitation and the students who
commented on the paper.
   1.  See       Corporate     Social      Responsibility,   INVESTOPEDIA,
http://www.investopedia.com/terms/c/corp-social-responsibility.asp (last visited Feb. 8, 2018).
   2.  EQUATOR PRINCIPLES, http://www.equator-principles.com/ (last visited Feb. 8, 2018).

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