Leading Towards a Level Playing Field, Repaying Ecological Debt, or Making Environmental Space: Three Stories About International Environmental Cooperation

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Osgoode Hall Law Journal, Vol: 43, Page: 137-170

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Mickelson, Karin
International environmental law; Climate change; Developing countries; Ecological debt; Environmental Space; Environmental Law; International Law; Law
article description
This article considers a number of different ways of conceptualizing the relationship between South and North in the environmental context, focusing on international responses to climate change and, particular, the Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. It explores three stories about international cooperation. One derives from the concept of "ecological debt," the second comes from the concept of "environmental space," and the third, which might be said to underlie the U.S. approach to the Kyoto Protocol at the present time, is labelled "leading towards a level playing field." This article provides an overview of all three stories, and attempts to offer some insight into the very different visions of the international community that they encapsulate.