Protecting Your Environment, Exacerbating Injustice: Avoiding 'Mandate Havens'

39 Pages Posted: 26 Dec 2014 Last revised: 27 Feb 2015

Date Written: 2014


To compensate for a grave environmental injustice -- climate change caused by industrial pollution -- Northern legal solutions should not exacerbate the problem. In this article, I describe how environmental goals are undermined when domestic nations of the North implement greenhouse gas reducing laws, and I offer some solutions towards ensuring that laws aimed to improve domestic environments and to mitigate the externalities of Northern consumption actually contribute to a more just world. Drawing on the concept of "pollution havens," I introduce the concept of "mandate havens," i.e. Northern laws mandating environmental protection that have detrimental impacts in the South. I focus on how mandate havens result from laws requiring biofuels production and from laws that implement REDD, and I present models for how governments, businesses, and private citizens can work across national boundaries to mitigate environmental injustice both through reducing pollution back home while alleviating poverty and protecting local ecosystems abroad.

Keywords: Environmental Law, International Environmental Law, Biofuels, REDD , Forests, Deforestation, Environmental Justice, International Human Rights, Pollution Havens, Climate Change, Climate Change Law, Sustainable Development

JEL Classification: Q20, Q22, Q25, Q15, Q17, Q18, Q24, Q28

Suggested Citation

Takacs, David, Protecting Your Environment, Exacerbating Injustice: Avoiding 'Mandate Havens' (2014). Duke Environmental Law & Policy Forum, Vol. XXIV, p. 315, Spring 2014, UC Hastings Research Paper No. 131, Available at SSRN:

David Takacs (Contact Author)

UC Law, San Francisco ( email )

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