The Environmental Rights Revolution: A Global Study of Constitutions, Human Rights, and the Environment
The right to a healthy environment is the subject of extensive philosophical debates that revolve around a key question: Should rights to clean air, water, and soil be entrenched in law?
This pioneering book answers this by moving beyond theoretical debate to measure the practical effects of enshrining the right in constitutions. David Boyd analyzes 193 constitutions and the laws and court decisions of more than 100 nations in Europe, Latin America, Asia, and Africa. He reveals that nations with constitutional protections have stronger environmental laws, enhanced enforcement, greater government accountability, and better access to justice, information, and public participation in decision making than nations without such provisions. As a result, they demonstrate superior environmental performance and have smaller ecological footprints.Boyd not only demonstrates that constitutionalizing environmental protection has the power to make sustainability a priority, he tells inspiring stories about the difference the right to a healthy environment is making in people's lives.