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Environmental Protection versus Trade Liberalization : Finding the Balance

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Sandra L. Walker

V. Legality of production-related environmental measures

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The regulation of production processes causing pollution or other environmental degradation differs from the regulation of product-caused pollution in one fundamental respect. When applied to foreign products imported into the country, a production regulation aims to reduce environmental harm not in the country of import but in the country of export201. Because of this extraterritorial aspect to production regulation, it has been the subject of heated political and legal controversy in the last few years. The most recent example in GATT jurisprudence is the Tuna/Dolphin case decided in August of 1991. In this case, US import bans on tuna captured on the high seas using methods which US legislation prohibited were found to be in violation of the GATT rules202. The issue of regulating another country’s production processes also arose in the context of the negotiations of a North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) between Canada, the US and Mexico. A coalition of environmentalist gr...

© Presses de l’Université Saint-Louis, 1993

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