State responsibility, climate change and human rights under international law
Title: State responsibility, climate change and human rights under international law
Author: WEWERINKE, Margaretha Johanna
Citation: Florence : European University Institute, 2015
Series/Number: EUI PhD theses; Department of Law
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has stated in numerous reports that unless urgent action is taken to curb the emission of greenhouse gases, irreparable damage will be done to the Earth's ecosystems, with major implications for human rights. The IPCC's reports also demonstrate that developing nations are most severely affected by the consequences of climate change, whereas developed nations have reaped the most benefits from the greenhouse gas-producing activities that led to climate change. This thesis considers the relevance of international human rights law to this equity challenge, paying particular attention to the inter-relationship between international human rights law, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the general law of State responsibility. The rules of attribution contained in the general law of State responsibility are used to explain how action and inaction that contributes to climate change can be attributed to States. The analysis of substantive rules leads us to believe that the UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol provide minimum standards of protection against dangerous climate change, the breach of which is likely to interfere with the enjoyment of human rights. Accordingly, a breach of the substantive provisions of the UNFCCC or the Kyoto Protocol could highlight a violation of human rights obligations related to climate change. The integrative approach presented in the thesis potentially enhances the effectiveness of each framework, as it leads to more specific standards of care for individual States as well as a broader framework for enforcing obligations.
LC Subject Heading: Climatic changes -- Law and legislation; Liability for climatic change damages; Government liability (International law); Human rights
Defence date: 3 March 2015; Examining Board: Professor Martin Scheinin, European University Institute (Supervisor); Dr Markus Gehring, University of Cambridge (External Supervisor); Professor Marise Cremona, European Universtiy Institute; Professor Frédéric Mégret, McGill University.
Type of Access: embargoedAccess