International Law of the Environment Tragedy of Commons Assignment

International Law of the Environment : Tragedy of Commons Assignment Sample

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Introduction

The key purpose of this study is to discuss “the Tragedy of the Commons” which refers to the effectiveness of the international legal regimes in preventing trans-boundary environmental harms. In this way, the Tragedy of the Commons is defined as the situation within the shared resources system at which single users act independently as per their own self-interest[1]. They also behave contrary to all users’ common good through depleting as well as spoiling the shared resources with the help of their collective actions. In other words, it is an idea of over-exploiting the common resource in the absence of proper regulation whereas the common concerns remain unfulfilled[2]. In the context of this concept, this study is conducted by including the principles and the practices of international environmental law. It also focuses on the concept, principles, and policies related to the philosophical basis for the law area along with the capability to apply the theory, principles and regulations and the ability to identify the conflict issues[3].

International Law of the Environment Tragedy of Commons Assignment Figure1

Main Body

Reflect the comprehensive understanding of key principles and the practice of the IEL

As per the current legal environment, several problems are identified in which the tragedy of the commons is also included[4]. Generally, the tragedy of the commons is a theory of economics that defines how the people most of the time utilize the natural resources for their personal interest without concerning the goods of the group or the society[5]. The situation of the tragedy of commons occurs when the resources are scarce, rivalrous within the consumption and the non-excludable[6].  While having this situation, one of the important solutions for the tragedy of the commons is to the indulgence of the imposition of government regulation, private property and the development of the collective action arrangements, etc[7].

In addition, some principles and practices are defined related to the IEL w for dealing with the problem of the tragedy of the commons. The general principles of IEL refer to the rules related to customary international law[8]. These rules are important to control the toxic waste and the reduction of critical resources under a framework related to sustainable development[9]. These seven principles of international environmental law are defined below:

  1. Principle of the Situation Sovereignty: It includes two apparently contradicting principles. First is related to sovereign rights on the natural resources and the second is responsibilities as not to damage the environment[10].
  2. Principle for the shared natural resources and the common property management: this principle defines the state of equitable utilization and the trans-boundary cooperation for shared natural resources along with the state of balancing of interest for the common property[11].
  3. Principle of Common Heritage of Mankind: This principle force to shift the people’s interest from common heritage to common concerns[12].
  4. The obligation of the State to Cooperate, inform and consult: as per this principle, it places a limitation on the states to prevent the activities in the state’s territory which are opposing to the other state’s rights[13].
  5. Introduction and the Overview: This principle provides a concise introduction to the principles of the environmental law along with the content of the principle and their legal role[14].
  6. Sustainable Development: This principle concerns environmental protection and poverty alleviation which are seen as contradictory goals[15].
  7. Principle of the Common but the Differentiated Responsibilities: It is the last principle which focuses on the differences in the environmental standards and obligation to transfer the resources and the technology[16].

Define the concept, principles, and policies concerned with the philosophical basis

In the area of defined economic issues such as the Tragedy of the Commons, it is identified that there is a specific principle for this situation in the International Environmental Law as a separate problem[17]. The concept of the Tragedy of the Commons is identified as the economic problem which results in the overconsumption, underinvestment and the ultimate depletion of the natural resources. In this situation, the demand for crucial resources is overwhelmed by its supply within the country[18]. Moreover, each person who uses an additional unit of the common resources directly harms the other people who are unable to enjoy the benefits[19]. The problem of the tragedy of the commons takes place when people neglect the social well-being within the pursuit of personal gain[20].

In this situation, only one can be the possible solution that is top-down government rules and regulations or direct control over the common pool resources[21]. The international environmental law reflects a specific principle such as principle for the shared natural resources and the common property management[22]. It is effective to prevent the overutilization of the common natural resources by a single user. Similarly, regulating consumption as well as the use or the legally separated individuals are effective to decrease the overconsumption and the investment of the government in the area of conservation. In the situation of Tragedy of the Commons, the renewal of the resources can also be beneficial to prevent resource depletion[23].

Disclose the capability to apply the related legal theories, principles, and regulations to aspects related to established or the novel practices

While discussing the IEL, it is determined that it took a long time from its origin within the relevance of the wide principles which are derived from the state sovereignty for the environment related issues[24].  This international environmental law was defined especially for resolving the environmental issues within the country. In this way, the IEL is concerned with practices which are to control the toxic waste as well as the reduction of the resources under a framework related to the sustainable development[25]. The IEL is identified as the branch of the PIL which is the body of law developed by the states for the states with respect to governing the problems which occur among the states[26].

In this way, it can be mentioned that the state only has the ability to apply the Tragedy of the Commons problem relevant principle, concepts and the regulations in concern of established or the novel practices within the area of IEL[27]. It is because the states have developed this body of law so these have the rights and ability to implement the principles defined under the international environmental law which has the key objective to prevent the pollution, ozone depletion, climate change, air, water, and the trans-foundry water pollution, toxic and the hazardous substances conservation of the marine resource, nuclear damage, and the desertification, etc[28].

Reflect the capability to determine the conflict issues in environmental legal situations

After concerning the ability to apply the relevant rules to aspects related to established or the novel practices within the field of the IEL, it is also essential to discuss the ability to identify the conflict issues the relevance in concern of the national jurisdictions and to develop the informed decisions as for the appropriate methods related to the dispute resolutions[29]. In this manner, one of the major issues for international environmental law is to establish an effective manner of regulating private activities within the states. It is because the traditional international environmental law has directed the conduct of the states not the people[30]. At this situation, several conflicting issues got raised and these conflict issues were needed to be resolved and it was done by the states as these are the one which developed the international environmental law for the issues between the states[31]. In a similar manner, the development of a number of a mechanism related to the environment has also been done which has the aim to resolve the issues associated with the nature of the case per case[32]. Moreover, the states have the ability to determine the conflict issues within the typical environmental legal situation in order to assess the relevance of the national jurisdictions and to develop informed decisions as for the appropriate method related to the dispute resolution[33].

Conclusion

At the end of this essay, it can be concluded that the international environmental law has an important role in managing the environment by reducing or controlling the pollution and managing the resources by prohibiting the depletion of the natural resources as per the framework related to the sustainable development within the states. This international environmental law is the branch of the public international law that has been introduced in all the nations as the obligation for them “to protect as well as preserve the environment”[34]. In a similar manner, it is also identified that this international environmental law drives seven principles that are taken by the general public as the government rules or regulations which are related to environmental pollution and the depletion of natural resources[35].

Bibliography

Cases

Grand Banks fisheries (1960s & 1970s)

Cesare Pr Romano, ‘The Shadow Zones of International Judicialization’ in Oxford handbook of international adjudication (OUP, 2014) 105-6)

Legislations

National Environmental Policy Act

Declaration of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment (the 1972 Stockholm Declaration) (UN Doc. A/CONF/48/14/REV.1 (1972)

Rio Declaration on Environment and Development  (UN Doc. A/CONF.151/26 (vol. I)

Clean Air Act

Endangered Species Act

Montreal Protocol

Clean Water Act,

Secondary Sources (Texts and Journals)

Torres, A., Brandt, J., Lear, K., & Liu, J. (2017). A looming tragedy of the sand commons. Science, 357(6355), 970-971.

Tzimas, T. (2018, August). Artificial Intelligence as Global Commons and the “International Law Supremacy” Principle. In Proceedings of the 10th International RAIS Conference on Social Sciences and Humanities (pp. 83-88). Scientia Moralitas Research Institute.

Hollis, A., & Maybarduk, P. (2015). Antibiotic resistance is a tragedy of the commons that necessitates global cooperation. The Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics43(3_suppl), 33-37.

Deese, R. S. (2019). Transcending the Tragedy of the Commons. In Climate Change and the Future of Democracy (pp. 71-85). Springer, Cham

Druzin, B. H. (2016). The Parched Earth of Cooperation: How to Solve the Tragedy of the Commons in International Environmental Governance. Duke J. Comp. & Int’l L.27, 73.

[1]Dell’Angelo, J., D’Odorico, P., Rulli, M. C., & Marchand, P. (2017). The tragedy of the grabbed commons: coercion and dispossession in the global land rush. World Development, 92, 1-12.

[2] Cullet, P. (2017). Differential treatment in international environmental law. UK: Routledge.

[3] Torres, A., Brandt, J., Lear, K., & Liu, J. (2017). A looming tragedy of the sand commons. Science, 357(6355), 970-971.

[4] Frischmann, B. M., Marciano, A., & Ramello, G. B. (2019). Retrospectives: Tragedy of the Commons after 50 Years. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 33(4), 211-28.

[5] Araral, E. (2014). Ostrom, Hardin and the commons: A critical appreciation and a revisionist view. Environmental Science & Policy36, 11-23.

[6] Tzimas, T. (2018, August). Artificial Intelligence as Global Commons and the “International Law Supremacy” Principle. In Proceedings of the 10th International RAIS Conference on Social Sciences and Humanities (pp. 83-88). Scientia Moralitas Research Institute.

[7] HESCOVICI, A. (2015). Tragedy of commons versus tragedy of anticommons? An institutional analysis. In WINIR CONFERENCE (Vol. 2, pp. 4-28).

[8] Hollis, A., & Maybarduk, P. (2015). Antibiotic resistance is a tragedy of the commons that necessitates global cooperation. The Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics43(3_suppl), 33-37.

[9] Haas, P. (Ed.). (2017). International environmental governance. UK: Routledge.

[10] Weitz, J. S., Eksin, C., Paarporn, K., Brown, S. P., & Ratcliff, W. C. (2016). An oscillating tragedy of the commons in replicator dynamics with game-environment feedback. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences113(47), E7518-E7525.

[11] Deese, R. S. (2019). Transcending the Tragedy of the Commons. In Climate Change and the Future of Democracy (pp. 71-85). Springer, Cham.

[12] Cole, D. H., Epstein, G., & McGinnis, M. D. (2014). Digging deeper into Hardin’s pasture: the complex institutional structure of ‘the tragedy of the commons’. Journal of Institutional Economics10(3), 353-369.

[13] Brenton, T. (2019). The greening of Machiavelli: the evolution of international environmental politics (Vol. 4). UK: Routledge.

[14] Karnani, A. (2014). Corporate social responsibility does not avert the tragedy of the commons. Case study: Coca-Cola India. Economics, Management, and Financial Markets9(3), 11-23.

[15] Druzin, B. H. (2016). The Parched Earth of Cooperation: How to Solve the Tragedy of the Commons in International Environmental Governance. Duke J. Comp. & Int’l L.27, 73.

[16] Berger, D., Martinossi-Allibert, I., Grieshop, K., Lind, M. I., Maklakov, A. A., & Arnqvist, G. (2016). Intralocus sexual conflict and the tragedy of the commons in seed beetles. The American Naturalist188(4), E98-E112.

[17] Olson, C. A. (2014). Survey burden, response rates, and the tragedy of the commons. Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions34(2), 93-95.

[18] Botchway, T. P. (2019). The Balanced Obligation and the Basis for Compliance in International Law: Reflections on the Question of International Obligation. J. Pol. & L.12, 23.

[19] Gross, J., & De Dreu, C. K. (2019). Individual solutions to shared problems create a modern tragedy of the commons. Science advances5(4), eaau7296.

[20] Pevato, P. M. (Ed.). (2017). International Environmental Law, Volumes I and II. UK: Routledge.

[21] Pearce, D. W. (2014). Blueprint 4: capturing global environmental value. UK: Routledge.

[22] Ohler, A. M., & Billger, S. M. (2014). Does environmental concern change the tragedy of the commons? Factors affecting energy saving behaviors and electricity usage. Ecological Economics107, 1-12.

[23] Asfahl, K. L., Walsh, J., Gilbert, K., & Schuster, M. (2015). Non-social adaptation defers a tragedy of the commons in Pseudomonas aeruginosa quorum sensing. The ISME journal, 9(8), 1734.

[24] Dinger, V., Steinkamp, S., & Westermann, F. (2014). The tragedy of the commons and inflation bias in the euro area. Open Economies Review, 25(1), 71-91.

[25] Ratner, S. R. (2015). The thin justice of international law: a moral reckoning of the law of nations. OUP Oxford.

[26] Hazlett, T. W., & Skorup, B. (2014). Tragedy of the regulatory commons: Lightsquared and the missing spectrum rights. Duke L. & Tech. Rev., 13, 1.

[27] O’Brien, K. S., Blumberg, S., Enanoria, W. T., Ackley, S., Sippl-Swezey, N., & Lietman, T. M. (2014). Antibiotic use as a tragedy of the commons: A cross-sectional survey. Computational and mathematical methods in medicine, 2014.

[28] McNickle, G. G., & Brown, J. S. (2014). An ideal free distribution explains the root production of plants that do not engage in a tragedy of the commons game. Journal of Ecology102(4), 963-971.

[29] Bollier, D., & Helfrich, S. (Eds.). (2014). The wealth of the commons: A world beyond market and state. US: Levellers Press.

[30] Thumfart, J. (2017). Francisco de Vitoria and the Nomos of the Code: The Digital Commons and Natural Law, Digital Communication as a Human Right, Just Cyber-Warfare. In At the Origins of Modernity (pp. 197-217). USA: Springer, Cham.

[31] Hardin, G. (2017). The tragedy of the unmanaged commons. In Evolutionary perspectives on environmental problems (pp. 106-108). UK: Routledge.

[32] Ghaleigh, N. S. (2018). Thoughts on ‘Theory’, International Law and Environmental Law Scholarship.

[33] Haig, D. (2016). Intracellular evolution of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and the tragedy of the cytoplasmic commons. BioEssays38(6), 549-555.

[34] Armeni, C. (2015). Global experimentalist governance, international law and climate change technologies. International & Comparative Law Quarterly64(4), 875-904.

[35] Wilkinson Cross, K. P. (2016). The Environment as a Commodity? An ecofeminist analysis of the extent to which associations between security and the environment have altered the perception of the environment in international law (Doctoral dissertation, University of Sheffield).

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