Trade and the environment has become a major issue in international relations, yet the surrounding debate remains polarised and hostile. This book answers the question: Can an international liability regime facilitate international trade while fostering environmental sustainability? On the one hand, the authors argue, international trade is perceived as a major threat to environmental sustainability, whilst on the other, trade and the economic development arising from it is seen as the prerequisite to stronger environmental protection. Nowhere is the debate more acrimonious than over trade in genetically modified organisms. The Biosafety Protocol has been negotiated to govern trade in genetically modified products and includes provisions for an international liability regime to facilitate trade - a subject that has been little studied. This valuable study explores the role, design and potential effectiveness of such a regulating body and addresses questions such as - what are the options for an international environmental liability regime? Why are some options unworkable? Is there a set of options that will achieve the dual goals of trade facilitation and environmental protection?
Is international liability the best option for defusing the trade and environment debate? This illuminating book will be an essential read for scholars and students (senior undergraduate as well as postgraduate) of international trade policy, environmental economics, international politics and international law. Individuals working in international organizations, those employed by environmental NGOs and government policy makers will also find much to engage them within this book.