5 Climate L. 1 (2015)

handle is hein.journals/climatla5 and id is 1 raw text is: 


CLIMATE  LAW  (2015) 1-24


BRILL
NIJHOFF


brill.com/clIa


                                 Debate







The   Applicability of the Principle of Prevention

to  Climate Change: A Response to Zahar


        Benoit Mayer
     International Law Institute and Environmental Law Institute, Wuhan
     University
        bnt.mayer@gmaiLcom



        Abstract

This is a response to Alexander Zahar's article in the previous issue of Climate Law.
Zahar argued that 'the principle of prevention is neither applicable nor of relevance
to the problem of climate change. Firstly, I discuss Zahar's scepticism toward state
responsibility in the context of climate change. Secondly, I engage critically with
Zahar's claim that the preventive principle only applies to the type of environmental
damage  that occurs in a short timeframe and in a confined space. I show that some
sources of international law do recognize the applicability of the preventive princi-
ple to damage to the global environment. Lastly, I dissent with Zahar's qualification
of the climate regime as a derogation to the principle of prevention. I argue that the
principle of prevention is a necessary corollary of the rights of states to territorial
integrity, although the modalities of application of the principle need to be refined.



        Keywords


principle of prevention - climate change - International Law Association


I  Alexander Zahar,'Mediated versus Cumulative Environmental Damage and the International
   Law Association's Legal Principles on Climate Change', 4(3-4) Climate Law 217 (2014), at 217


( KONINKLIJKE BRILL NV, LEIDEN, 2015  DOI 10.1163/18786561-00501001

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