Potential Liability for Climate-Related Measures Under the Trans-Pacific Partnership
Columbia Law School, Center for Climate Change Law White Paper, August 2014
30 Pages Posted: 15 Feb 2015
Date Written: August 7, 2014
The Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade and Globalization Agreement (TPP) is currently being negotiated by 12 Pacific Rim countries: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States, and Vietnam. With 29 chapters, the TPP addresses much more than trade, setting binding policy related to investment, intellectual property, technological barriers to trade, and the environment. If negotiations are successful, this "mega-treaty" will be the largest free trade agreement to date, initially governing 40 percent of the world's GDP and 26 percent of the world's trade. The agreement will be open for other Pacific Rim countries to join over time. Many scholars have expressed concern that fair trade agreements (FTAs) and other international investment agreements (IIAs) create a threat of government liability for measures taken to combat climate change. This white paper addresses whether the TPP investment chapter adequately shields governments from risk of liability for climate change policies.
Keywords: TPP, Trans-Pacific Partnership, Pacific Rim, trade, investment, intellectual property, environment, free trade, free trade agreement, FTA, IIA, international investment agreement, climate change
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