Joining the Aotearoa New Zealand Constitutional Debate: Constitutional Environmental Rights in Our Future ‘Constitution’

150 Pages Posted: 13 May 2015

See all articles by Bohao Li

Bohao Li

Victoria University of Wellington, Faculty of Law, Student/Alumni

Date Written: 2013

Abstract

In 2013, the Constitutional Advisory Panel invited New Zealanders to think about our vision of what New Zealand should look like in the future and to consider how our constitutional arrangements would support that vision. In response, New Zealanders have suggested the inclusion of an environmental protection regime in our future constitutional landscape. The author supports this prevailing opinion. This paper will use the experiences gained from international and regional human rights and environmental law treaties and other countries’ constitutions to explore the best model to achieve that goal. This comparative law analysis will identify the key theoretical and legal issues that must be addressed by Parliament to ensure the successful implementation and enforcement of an environmental protection regime through the courts. While international developments are important, any environmental constitutional framework must reflect New Zealand’s unique and distinctive history, environment, people, and cultural values. With this in mind, this paper will tentatively canvass a new environmental constitutional framework and lay foundations for further legal research and public debate.

Keywords: Anthropocentric Approach, Constitutional Environmental Rights, Ecocentric Approach, Environmental Human Rights

JEL Classification: K10, K30, K40

Suggested Citation

Li, Bohao, Joining the Aotearoa New Zealand Constitutional Debate: Constitutional Environmental Rights in Our Future ‘Constitution’ (2013). Victoria University of Wellington Legal Research Paper Series Student/Alumni Paper No. 7, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2601898

Bohao Li (Contact Author)

Victoria University of Wellington, Faculty of Law, Student/Alumni ( email )

PO Box 600
Wellington, 6140
New Zealand

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