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Foreign Investor Protection and Climate Action: A New Price Tag for Urgent Policies

10 Pages Posted: 2 Dec 2015 Last revised: 19 Apr 2016

Gus Van Harten

York University - Osgoode Hall Law School

Date Written: November 26, 2015

Abstract

From a climate perspective, not all investment is equal. Desirable investment in clean energy needs encouragement and protection, while undesirable investment in fossil fuels needs clear policy signals to avoid further investment in destructive activities and stranding more assets. In this paper, evidence is presented on how foreign investor protection provisions in trade and investment agreements tilt the playing field in favor of entrenched incumbents and against urgent action on climate; on the potential for a massive expansion of investor-state litigation and risks to climate policy in proposed trade deals; and on key flaws in recent European Commission proposals to reform investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS).

Keywords: Climate change, foreign investor protection, investor-state dispute settlement

JEL Classification: K10

Suggested Citation

Van Harten, Gus, Foreign Investor Protection and Climate Action: A New Price Tag for Urgent Policies (November 26, 2015). Osgoode Legal Studies Research Paper No. 21/2016. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2697555

Gus Van Harten (Contact Author)

York University - Osgoode Hall Law School ( email )

4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3
Canada
416 650 8419 (Phone)

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