Probing the Hidden Depths of Climate Law: Analysing National Climate Change Legislation

Eloise Scotford and Stephen Minas, ‘Probing the Hidden Depths of Climate Law: Analysing National Climate Change Legislation’ (2019) 28(1) RECIEL 67-81

Faculty of Laws University College London Law Research Paper No. 3/2021

Peking University School of Transnational Law Research Paper

27 Pages Posted: 8 Jan 2021 Last revised: 3 Feb 2021

See all articles by Eloise A.K. Scotford

Eloise A.K. Scotford

University College London - Faculty of Laws

Stephen Minas

Peking University School of Transnational Law; A Dickson Poon Transnational Law Institute

Date Written: November 27, 2018

Abstract

National governments that are committed to a social transition in the pursuit of climate policy face a complex legal challenge in evaluating how their legal and regulatory architectures support climate policy and in introducing new legal measures to implement their Paris Agreement commitments. This article sets out a method for appraising how fragmented national climate-relevant laws combine to create an aggregated legal and regulatory landscape that frames and governs national responses to climate change. Appraising this kind of landscape is a methodologically fraught exercise, considering that climate change can intersect with many areas of law and regulation, which are all embedded within the histories, legal doctrines, and governance frameworks of particular legal systems. We propose a tripartite method for this task – identifying ‘direct’ or explicit climate laws, identifying ‘indirect’ or implicit climate laws, and investigating legal cultures that inform and express both types of climate-related law. The article focuses on climate-related legislation in countries with lawmaking assemblies in proposing this approach, arguing that the national scale and legislative processes are both particularly significant in evaluating climate laws. This approach to climate law methodology can support both national climate planning and multilateral processes such as the Paris Agreement’s global stocktake.

Keywords: climate legislation, climate law, Paris Agreement, environmental law methodology

Suggested Citation

Scotford, Eloise A.K. and Minas, Stephen, Probing the Hidden Depths of Climate Law: Analysing National Climate Change Legislation (November 27, 2018). Eloise Scotford and Stephen Minas, ‘Probing the Hidden Depths of Climate Law: Analysing National Climate Change Legislation’ (2019) 28(1) RECIEL 67-81, Faculty of Laws University College London Law Research Paper No. 3/2021, Peking University School of Transnational Law Research Paper , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3757972

Eloise A.K. Scotford (Contact Author)

University College London - Faculty of Laws ( email )

Gower St
London WC1E OEG, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

Stephen Minas

Peking University School of Transnational Law ( email )

University Town,
Xili, Nanshan District
Shenzhen, Guangdong 518055
China

A Dickson Poon Transnational Law Institute ( email )

London, England WC2R 2LS
United Kingdom

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