When do international treaties matter for domestic environmental legislation?

Brandi, Clara / Dominique Blümer / Jean-Frédéric Morin
External Publications (2019)

in: Global Environmental Politics 19 (4), 14-44

Information

While thousands of environment-related treaties have been concluded, it remains unclear whether they have been implemented. This paper investigates the relationship between the conclusion of treaties, namely international environmental agreements (IEAs) and preferential trade agreements (PTAs) that include environmental provisions, and the adoption of domestic environmental legislations. Thanks to datasets that are significantly more comprehensive and fine-grained than those previously used, we can focus on the direct link to environmental legislations rather than the less direct link to environmental outcomes. We are also able to study the relationship between international obligations on specific environmental issue areas and legislation in the same issue areas. As expected, we find a significant and positive relationship between both IEAs and PTAs with domestic legislation. Moreover, the link between treaties and domestic legislation is more pronounced in developing countries and, in these countries, more pronounced before rather than after entry into force. This relationship can be observed for many specific environmental issue areas, but not all of them. These findings contribute to the literature on environmental regime effectiveness and the domestic impact of treaties.

About the author

Brandi, Clara

Economy and Political Science

Brandi

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