The argument of this book has been that any modern democratic state ought to constitutionalize a right to an adequate environment. The normative drive of this argument has been the affirmation of a right, in the words of the Brundtland Report, of all human beings to an environment adequate for their health and well-being. Yet by no means all human beings enjoy the rights protected by modern democratic states. This prompts the question whether the argument serves to promote measures which might improve the environmental protections provided in the 'well-ordered societies' while leaving untouched, or possibly even worsened, the position of the rest of the planet's population. The focus of this final chapter is accordingly on questions about the role that can be played by constitutional environmental rights in the pursuit of environmental justice more generally.
One central argument will be that even if the provision of constitutional environmental rights in any given affluent democratic state cannot be expected in and of itself directly to promote the protection of environmental human rights beyond that state, it can be expected to have indirect effects that are conducive to that end. In order to unfold that argument, though, it is necessary first to say something about why the focus on rights provisions within states is appropriate. For in view of the fact that many of the most serious environmental threats transcend the territorial boundaries
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Publication information: Book title: Constitutional Environmental Rights. Contributors: Tim Hayward - Author. Publisher: Oxford University Press. Place of publication: Oxford. Publication year: 2005. Page number: 185.
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