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10. The Pythia Replaced: Conclusions

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Chapter Summary

The main purpose of this study was to clarify the implications of the precautionary principle under general international law. This study heeds the approach taken by the ICJ and most commentators, who do not consider the frequently occurring practice of states running counter to, e.g., the 'paper5 obligation of Principle 21 as a reason for denying its customary law status. The Pythia has been replaced by the precautionary principle. One of them is the fact that for human beings, as one Hugo Baskerville reportedly put it in 1742, "that which is clearly known hath less terror than that which is but hinted at and guessed". It is hoped that this study has gone some way in reducing such terror by making the implications of the precautionary principle under general international law more clearly known, so that these need no longer be but hinted at and guessed.

Keywords: precautionary principle; Pythia



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