America First, Paris Last: Does the America First Policy Mean the Death of the Paris Agreement?

By Aleksandar Vuksic Despite its shortcomings, and there are a few,[1] the Paris Agreement (Agreement) was a monumental achievement. Although the euphoria was not shared amongst all climate scientists, the international cooperation and new approach to climate diplomacy that was achieved cannot be understated.[2] It is no surprise then that when President Trump announced that […]

High Tide: Climate Change and Island States

By Olivia Townsend Seas cover more than 70% of the surface of the globe and historically have performed two important functions: first, as a medium of communication, and secondly, as a plentiful resource. These functions prompted the development of legal rules governing the seas, the most relevant of which is the United Nations Convention on […]

Sea Shepherd – Defenders of International Law?

By Evie Ward Sea Shepherd is a non-profit conservation organisation known throughout the world for their hands-on and sometimes violent approach to the protection of ocean habitats and the creatures within.  While they have missions to defend all ocean creatures great and small, it is not Operation Krill putting them in the news. Causing all […]

Nature’s Legal Personality

I’m about to present a very lofty aspiration for International Law, one on recognising nature as a living person. But is this possible and practical? Under new legislation,[1] the Whanganui River in New Zealand became the first major river in the world to be recognised as a living entity. The river was afforded legal personality – the […]

Treatise on Treaties: Government Change and Withdrawal from International Agreements

International treaties are a tricky business. They are essentially contracts between signatory nations. Problems emerge when nations withdraw from or don’t ratify these treaties in the first place. While some treaties do explicitly forbid, or simple do not provide a withdrawal process, we do come to one of the more troublesome points of international law: […]