Private Environmental Governance

Readings: 1. Textbook: Chapter 7, Section II.B. Compliance Monitoring and Reporting, pages 397-398 (skip Kal Raustaila, Reporting and Review Institutions) Chapter 7, Section II.B. Compliance Monitoring and Reporting, starting with Verification, pages 400-401 (skip Questions and Discussion) Chapter 7, Section II.C. Responding to Noncompliance, pages 403-412 (skip Peter Sand, Sanctions; skip Questions and Discussion, pages 408-409) Chapter 7, Section II.C.6. Bringing It Together: Compliance Mechanisms, pages 418-419 (up to Questions and Discussions) 2. The Emergence of Private Environmental Governance, Environmental Law Institute, 44 ELR 10125, 2014, available at In the readings, you learned about ways that treaties can incorporate compliance mechanisms. You also learned about private environmental governance. consider those two concepts together. International law relates to States but firms/corporations are still impacted by it. States must comply with multilateral environmental agreements but to do so, businesses within those States must follow the domestic laws that implement the treaty. While corporations must comply with domestic environmental laws and some corporations go above and beyond those laws to satisfy customers or shareholders or for other reasons, organizations are helping ensure sustainable development and stricter environmental protections by setting standards for corporations to voluntarily follow. A common thread throughout is the role of non-State actors in international law, whether it be in the negotiation phase of a treaty or in the compliance stage, post treaty. Or perhaps it is to set a standard that later becomes part of the basis for finding the standard to be customary law. For instance, (This is the subject of discussion for this paper) consider a hypothetical organization that sets the standard for not burning virgin rainforests to raise cattle. And 90% of the companies that buy beef do not buy beef from farmers that burned virgin rainforests. If a multilateral environmental agreement (MEA) dealing with rainforest destruction were to be negotiated, what role might this organization play? What role might this organization play in compliance with a treaty that is meant to prevent burning of virgin rainforests?.

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