Legal and economic responses to global warming - An Australian perspective

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Abstract

This article considers the position of countries heavily reliant on fossil fuels under the current multilateral negotiations towards reduction of greenhouse gas emission in response to global warming. The article first provides a brief description of the scientific basis for concern over global warming and consideration of traditional legal and economic responses. It then considers the development of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and recent negotiations for a uniform reduction target for developed countries. The difficulties in this process are examined from the perspective of Australia, a resource rich country which is heavily reliant on fossil fuels for electricity production and export income. It is concluded that a uniform reduction target would be unfair and relatively ineffective. A system of differentiated targets that take into account the specific circumstances of the parties to the Convention would have more economic integrity and provide a better basis for long-term management of global greenhouse gas emissions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-355
Number of pages15
JournalEnvironmental and Planning Law Journal
Volume14
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 1997

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