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International Actors and Stakeholders

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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines briefly the major players in the development and enforcement of international environmental law. In most states, the conduct of foreign relations is the exclusive responsibility of the national authorities and usually is the province of the executive branch. The VCLT reflects this practice by providing that heads of state and foreign ministers have inherent power to conclude treaties by virtue of the official positions they hold. Implementation and enforcement of international agreements often requires action by local authorities, who generally regulate such matters as municipal waste disposal and zoning and enforce the state's criminal laws. Different types of international institutions have been assigned roles in the field of environmental protection. The role of transnational civil society has been particularly important in the evolution of international environmental law.

Keywords: criminal laws; environmental protection; international environmental law; international financial institutions; transnational civil society; VCLT



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