Unilateral Trade-Related Climate Change Measures

The Journal of World Investment and Trade, Vol. 13, No. 6, 2012

53 Pages Posted: 30 Sep 2012 Last revised: 5 Dec 2012

See all articles by Rafael Leal-Arcas

Rafael Leal-Arcas

Queen Mary University of London - School of Law

Date Written: September 30, 2012


Climate change mitigation has become one of the most relevant topics today, and it will continue for years to come. It is a concern that has implications in economics, law, science, human rights, technology, international relations and ethics, to name but a few fields of knowledge. Climate change is a global problem that knows no geographical barriers. International law is not well equipped to face the challenges of climate change. Global climate is an indivisible public good. International law currently faces the challenge of fragmentation and the need to bring greater coherence to a fragmented system in combating climate change. The aim of this article is to explain the trade implications of climate change mitigation policies by analyzing a couple of areas where the international regimes for trade and climate change mitigation/energy may potentially clash: border carbon adjustments and applying subsidies and similar measures in order to encourage environmentally-friendly technologies. After the introduction, Section 2 provides an analysis on the link between the legal regimes of international trade and climate change. Section 3 compares both regimes and Section 4 offers an overview of unilateral trade-related climate change measures. Section 5 examines the main WTO provisions on subsidies and analyzes the WTO cases on subsidies for renewable energy. Section 6 focuses on the inclusion of aviation in the EU Emission Trading Scheme (EU ETS) and the potential expansion of the EU ETS to the shipping industry. Section 7 concludes the article.

Keywords: EU emissions trading scheme, trade and climate change, WTO subsidies for renewable energy, trade and energy, energy and climate change, aviation, shipping

Suggested Citation

Leal-Arcas, Rafael, Unilateral Trade-Related Climate Change Measures (September 30, 2012). The Journal of World Investment and Trade, Vol. 13, No. 6, 2012 , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2154388

Rafael Leal-Arcas (Contact Author)

Queen Mary University of London - School of Law ( email )

Lincoln's Inn Fields
Holborn, London WC2A 3JB
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.ccls.qmul.ac.uk/staff/lealarcas.html

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics