International Trade Law and Fragmentation in Water Regulation
China - US Law Review, Vol. 6, p. 50, 2009
Posted: 18 May 2009
Date Written: May 11, 2009
The future is drying out. And yet, the role of law in the governance of water resources seems to be spared of critical scrutiny. At the heart of the matter is our conception of water. Water is now a matter of global concern regulated through what is called here 'Global Water Governance' (GWG). GWG frames water as an environmental problem, as an international economic law and as a human rights matter-trapping thus the issue in maelstrom of legal fragmentation. This fragmented ambivalence has created a sense of anxiety. The default prescription is coherence. Against this approach, this paper argues that anxiety should be put to rest, for fragmentation of water law is a creative force, where we may find answers that traditional water law has failed to provide. Rather, it is concluded, emphasis should be made on the mechanisms that enhance transparency and accountability in global water governance.
Keywords: Water law, fragmentation of international law, human right to water, GATS, water markets
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