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This course focuses on the implementation of international principles for sustainable water management, through the lens of the Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs). It aims at illustrating the main “green” principles of international water law, stemming from both binding and non-binding instruments, and their implementation in domestic legislation, transboundary agreements and related court/arbitration decisions.

 

The course is mainly intended for policy makers (and their staff) from transboundary Basin Organizations (BOs), as well as from national water authorities, to foster the understanding of international and domestic water law and to build capacity for its implementation. The target audience also includes policy makers (and their staff) from regional and national legislatures, technocrats and water managers from BOs and water authorities, as well as graduate students in various disciplines (e.g. law, policy, and water management).

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Widespread concern about the need for global action for the protection of the natural environment is a relatively recent phenomenon. General public awareness of the problems relating to the global environment and the need for coordinated multilateral action to address these problems was not evident even a few decades ago. With the wider dissemination of information relating to the ever increasing environmental challenges, international concern has grown steadily over the years. Some inter-state efforts to address problems relating to the oceans, endangered species, and other natural resources, date back to the nineteenth century. 

In order to understand international environmental law, it is necessary to have a basic grasp of general international law. International environmental law is a subset of international law; and international law has been developing over a long period of time. Since a significant part of international environmental law is incorporated in Multilateral Environmental Agreements (“MEAs”), this course introduces you to treaty law and key concept of international environmental law. 

At the end of this course, you will be able to: 

  1. Describe the sources of international law
  2. Explain how a Multilateral Environmental Agreement is made and its basic architecture
  3. Define and provide examples of key principles and concept of international environmental law

The course is comprised of 3 units. Each unit includes a book with links to the InforMEA glossary and relevant documents and websites, additional materials and videos. Take the quiz to test your knowledge.

It will take you 90 minutes approximately to complete the course, excluding additional materials. You can manage your time as you wish; take one unit and retake the course whenever it is more convenient for you. 

After completing all the units and passing the quiz with an 80% of correct responses, you will receive a certificate of completion.

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Development can have, and has had over the years, major impacts on the environment, by degrading soils and waterways, altering landscapes and threatening biodiversity. In addition to harming our surroundings, these impacts can and do have significant economic costs and negatively affect human health. Environmental Impact Assessments (“EIA”) provides a tool that would assist in the anticipation and minimization of development’s negative effects. Undertaken in the early stages of project planning and design, EIA could help shape development in a manner that best suits the local environment and is most responsive to human needs. 

This course introduces you to the Espoo Convention, which seeks to establish Environmental Impact Assessment-based mechanisms to effectively monitor and control trans-boundary pollution. 

At the end of this course, you will be able to:

  1. Describe the need and concept of environmental impact assessments
  2. Identify the core components and mechanisms established by the Espoo Convention and its Protocol

The course is comprised of 2 units. Each unit includes a book with links to the InforMEA glossary and relevant documents and websites, additional materials and videos.

It will take you 1 hour approximately to complete the course, excluding additional materials. You can manage your time as you wish and retake the course whenever it is more convenient for you. After completing all the units and passing the quiz with an 80% of correct responses, you will receive a certificate of completion.

"This course has been developed by UNEP and it is based on UNEP´s Training Manual on International Environmental Law. In case of any discrepancy with the content of the Convention, its Protocol and UNECE guiding materials, the original text of the documents shall prevail and can be found here"

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