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Climate Change Adaptation Law: Is There Such a Thing?

from Reflection 1: Adaptation

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  15 June 2021

Benoit Mayer
Affiliation:
The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Alexander Zahar
Affiliation:
Southwest University of Political Science and Law
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Summary

This chapter discusses the main debates surrounding climate adaptation law. Adaptation to climate change is often presented as a subfield of climate law, alongside that of mitigation. Article 7 of the Paris Agreement establishes ‘the global goal on adaptation’ and links it with the Article 2 mitigation goal, thus lending support for the idea that an adaptation law might develop under the influence of the Paris Agreement, at least at the domestic level. Nevertheless, many in the field are sceptical: adaptation efforts often consist in the implementation of pre-existing developmental, environmental, or human-rights policies that are highly localized in their outlook. This chapter reviews the wealth of views on whether ‘adaptation law’ has emerged or should be recognized as a legal field, creating new, legally enforceable rights and obligations.

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Debating Climate Law , pp. 310 - 328
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2021

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