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The International Law on Climate Change

  • Date Published: June 2018
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108419871


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About the Authors
  • Global climate change is a topic of continuously growing interest. As more international treaties come into force, media coverage has increased and many universities are now starting to conduct courses specifically on climate change laws and policies. This textbook provides a survey of the international law on climate change, explaining how significant international agreements have sought to promote compliance with general norms of international law. Benoit Mayer provides an account of the rules agreed upon through lengthy negotiations under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and multiple other forums on mitigation, geoengineering, adaptation, loss and damage, and international support. The International Law on Climate Change is suitable for undergraduate and graduate students studying climate, environmental or international law. It is supported by a suite of online resources, available at, featuring regularly updated lists of complementary materials, weblinks and regular updates for each chapter.

    • An interdisciplinary treatment of climate change, clarifying its scientific, economic and political underpinnings
    • A clear and accessible writing style outlines simple step-by-step developments, enabling students to understand the complexity of a quarter-century of extremely intense negotiations
    • Differing and opposing views are discussed and evaluated, encouraging students to critically engage with the topics and develop their skills in debating and argumentative essay writing
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Comprehensive and thought-provoking, written in multiple perspectives. It is essential reading for academics and practitioners of international law in tackling the challenges of climate change and protecting the atmosphere in the twenty-first century.' Shinya Murase, Special Rapporteur on the 'Protection of the Atmosphere', UN International Law Commission

    'International climate change law has gradually come to reflect the complexity of the problem it seeks to address. Uncovering the why, how, where and what of international law on climate change, this book forms essential reading for anyone looking for an incisive analysis of how to tackle one of the defining challenges of our time.' Harro van Asselt, University of Eastern Finland

    'Offering an informed and engaged perspective on the international law that governs humanity's crucial efforts to address global climate change, this book is essential reading for policy-makers, practitioners and scholars interested in securing a sustainable future for themselves and for generations to come.' Marie-Claire Cordonier Segger, University of Waterloo, Canada

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    Product details

    • Date Published: June 2018
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108419871
    • length: 332 pages
    • dimensions: 253 x 195 x 20 mm
    • weight: 0.78kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. The rationale for international action on climate change
    3. The UNFCCC regime, from Rio to Paris
    4. Relevant developments in other regimes
    5. Relevant norms of general international law
    6. Differentiation
    7. International action on climate change mitigation
    8. Flexibility mechanisms
    9. Geoengineering
    10. International action on climate change adaptation
    11. Loss and damage
    12. International support
    13. Ambition and compliance
    14. Adjudication
    15. Non-state actors
    16. International law in times of climate change.

  • Author

    Benoit Mayer, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
    Benoit Mayer is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Law at The Chinese University of Hong Kong, where he teaches international law and environmental law. His research on the international law on climate change has been published in leading journals including the European Journal of International Law, the Asian Journal of International Law, Transnational Environmental Law and Climatic Change.

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