Environmental law and freshwater ecosystems
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This chapter focuses on the contributions of the International Court of Justice to environmental law in two cases involving Nicaragua, which have been many and significant. The judgment in the two cases considered, the Certain Activities and Construction of a Road cases, contains a wealth of material bearing upon the law of wetlands of international importance, governed by the Ramsar Convention, transboundary pollution, and the right of a state to maintain the flow and navigability of a watercourse within its borders. These cases also illustrate the challenges posed by cases involving substantial evidence of a scientific and technical nature, as well as those that deal with harm that builds incrementally. Finally, the Court’s judgment in the two cases shows that the Court is fully prepared to hold States to their procedural obligations in the field of the environment but that it will require clear and convincing evidence of harm before finding a breach of the obligation to prevent transboundary environmental harm.
Edgardo Sobenes Obregon, Benjamin Samson
Stephen C. McCaffrey,
Environmental law and freshwater ecosystems,
in Nicaragua Before the International Court of Justice: Impacts on International Law
(Edgardo Sobenes Obregon, Benjamin Samson eds., 2017).
Available at: https://scholarlycommons.pacific.edu/facultybooks/70