Through the Looking Glass: Using Trade Agreements to Enforce Environmental Law

32 Natural Resource and Environment 36 (2017)

5 Pages Posted: 18 May 2018

See all articles by Karrigan Bork

Karrigan Bork

UC Davis School of Law

Rachael E. Salcido

Pacific McGeorge School of Law

Date Written: September 1, 2017

Abstract

The United States free trade agreements with other North and Central American countries contain provisions allowing citizen submissions that may be a useful tool for advocates seeking to improve enforcement of U.S. environmental laws. The Dominican Republic-Central America-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) and the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation (NAAEC, a side agreement to NAFTA) both require any party to the agreements to “effectively enforce its environmental laws.” When the United States fails to enforce its own laws, it faces private action by U.S., Mexican, and Canadian citizens under NAAEC, and from citizens of other North and Central American countries under CAFTA-DR. This article provides an overview of the submission mechanisms in both agreements, reviews past private enforcement actions, and then reviews the challenges and advantages to futures use of these agreements to address U.S. failures in environmental protection.

Note: “©2016. Published in The Business Lawyer, Vol. 71, No. 4, Fall 2016, by the American Bar Association. Reproduced with permission. All rights reserved. This information or any portion thereof may not be copied or disseminated in any form or by any means or stored in an electronic database or retrieval system without the express written consent of the American Bar Association or the copyright holder.”

Keywords: Citizen Suit, Environmental Law, NAFTA, NAAEC, CAFTA

Suggested Citation

Bork, Karrigan and Salcido, Rachael E., Through the Looking Glass: Using Trade Agreements to Enforce Environmental Law (September 1, 2017). 32 Natural Resource and Environment 36 (2017) , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3169388

Karrigan Bork (Contact Author)

UC Davis School of Law ( email )

Martin Luther King, Jr. Hall
Davis, CA CA 95616-5201
United States
202-271-9392 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://https://law.ucdavis.edu/faculty/bork/

Rachael E. Salcido

Pacific McGeorge School of Law ( email )

3200 Fifth Avenue
Sacramento, CA 95817
United States
916.739.7354 (Phone)

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