Environmental Rights: Critical Perspectives
Does the concept of 'environmental rights' have any value? Environmental Rights offers new perspectives on contemporary debates over rights and environmental issues, criticising the traditional anthropocentric formulation and the view that it is meaningful to speak of environmental rights as a sub-set of human rights, infringed when individuals experience an environmental quality falling below a recognised standard. Drawing on key theories of contemporary philosophers and jurists, as well as case reports from judicial decisions in English, European and US courts, the book examines recent developments within environmental law and policy in the United Kingdom and the European Union. Specific rights of the individual are examined - the right to clean air and water, access to information, the right to participate in environmental decisions - as well as practical obstacles to the exercising of such rights, including problems of scientific evidence, high cost of litigation, and legal recognition of environmental pressure groups. Christopher Miller concludes that the environment does not lend itself to a rights discourse, but rather to one which stresses the important duties which individuals must assume if environmental threats to human welfare are to be averted.
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