Climate Change, Environmental Security and Global Justice

Solomon E. Salako


There is an international consensus that climate change is caused by human activities which substantially increase the atmospheric concentration of greenhouse gases.

The ill-effects of climate change are droughts which adversely affect the global poor who are engaged in agriculture; storm surges which destroy local infrastructure, housing and crops; and the rise of sea levels which adversely affect the inhabitants of small island states which could eventually be totally submerged. Military strategists and intelligence analysts are preparing for future conflicts likely to be caused by environmental security issues.

The objects of this article are: (i) to evaluate the ill-effects of climate change as a matter of global justice, (ii) to consider whether future generations have the right not to suffer from the ill-effects of climate change, and if so, (iii) to evaluate the relevant conceptions of global justice, and (iv) to assess critically whether international law provides effective preventive responses to climate change and environmental security threats.

Finally, a monist-naturalist conception of global justice privileging human dignity as one of its guiding principles is proffered as a solution to the problems raised by the mechanisms of dealing with the ill-effects of climate change and the attendant environmental security issues under international law.

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Copyright (c) 2017 Solomon Ekundayo Salako

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International Law Research  ISSN 1927-5234  (Print)  ISSN 1927-5242  (Online)  Email:

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