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The Environmental Rights Revolution


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Table of Contents

Part 1: The Emergence and Evolution of a New Human Right1 Constitutions, Human Rights, and the Environment: The Context2 The Right to a Healthy Environment: Framing the Issues3 The Prevalence and Enforceability of Environmental Provisions in National Constitutions4 The Influence of International LawPart 2: The Constitutional Right to a Healthy Environment in Practice5 A Framework for Assessing the Legal Influence of the Right to a Healthy Environment6 Latin America and the Caribbean7 Africa8 Asia9 Eastern Europe10 Western EuropePart 3: Evaluating the Impacts of Environmental Provisions in Constitutions11 Lessons Learned: Practical Experiences with the Right to a Healthy Environment12 Do Environmental Provisions in Constitutions Influence Environmental Performance?13 An Idea Whose Time Has ComeAppendicesAppendix 1. Research MethodsAppendix 2. Online Database: All Current Environmental Provisions from National ConstitutionsNotesReferencesIndex

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A pioneering account of the rapid spread of the constitutional right to a healthy environment and its effect on laws, court decisions, and peoples' everyday lives.

About the Author

Dr. David R. Boyd is one of Canada's leading experts in environmental law and policy and an adjunct professor in the School of Resource and Environmental Management at Simon Fraser University. He has advised the governments of Canada, Sweden, and Iceland on environmental and constitutional issues and is the co-chair of Vancouver's Greenest City Action Team along with Mayor Gregor Robertson. He is a member of the IUCN's Commission on Environmental Law, the Global Network for the Study of Human Rights and the Environment, the Forum for Leadership on Water, and the Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide (ELAW).David Boyd is the author of several bestselling and award-winning books as well as more than a hundred publications related to environmental law and policy, including Unnatural Law: Rethinking Canadian Environmental Law and Policy. His current research focuses on the effects of enshrining environmental rights and responsibilities in national constitutions.


What sets this book evidently apart from all the existing publications in the field is its empirical approach...in an earlier endorsement for this book's marketing, I declared that it 'breaks new ground in terms of approach, content, scope, and methodology and is well worth a place on the bookshelves of anyone who takes environmental rights and governance seriously'. After this recent reassessment of the book, I can only reiterate these sentiments.

-- Louis J Kotze, Professor, North-West University, South Africa * Journal of Human Rights and the Environment, Vol. 4 No. 1 *

Boyd's book forms an indispensable and influential addition to this literature not only due to the strength and comprehensiveness of its comparative legal analysis, but also because of the important empirical questions it seeks to answer as well as raises for future research. Indeed, by conducting the first serious and systematic empirical study of the environmental implications of the right to a healthy environment, Boyd has moved this field beyond the speculative and abstract arguments typical of earlier scholarship...Boyd's meticulous examination of the legal status of the right to a healthy environment in close to a hundred countries provides powerful evidence of its salience to legal systemsaround the world...The Environmental Rights Revolution forms an important, pioneering effort for understanding the legal influence and broader significance of the right to a healthy environment. As a result, the variety of empirical puzzles and questions that it leaves in its wake should continue to influence research in this field for many years to come.

-- Sebastien Jodoin * McGill International Journal of Sustainable Development Law and Policy, Volume 8: Issue 1 *

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