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    Environmental Law

    We live in a world where we are subject to environmental and economic effects that transcend national boundaries. Increasing globalisation has led to a greater recognition of the need to address these issues.



    How we engage

    Law is fundamental to just and effective governance of natural resources, for the benefit of people and nature.

    IUCN aims to advance environmental law through the development of legal concepts and instruments. IUCN also helps societies apply environmental law in the conservation of nature and ensure that any use of natural resources is equitable and ecologically sustainable.

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    desert desert Photo: naturfreund on Pixabay

    Climate Change

    Global biodiversity faces severe threats from climate change in the form of rising temperatures, floods, droughts, severe weather incidents, deforestation and desertification.


    Other areas

    The ELP works across different scales from global to local, and across the full spectrum of sectors concerning natural resource governance.


    Cambodia, river Cambodia, river Photo: kolibri5 on Pixabay

    Water Law and Governance

    Only 3% of the earth’s water is freshwater; about two-thirds of it is frozen in glaciers and polar ice caps and we have long over-stretched this precious resource.


    Protected Area Photo: IUCN

    Protected Areas (PAs) and Land Use

    Protected Area (PA) systems, as well as individual PAs, must be supported by a firm legal infrastructure.


    Quick reads

    Aimed at policy-makers and journalists, IUCN Issues Briefs provide key information on selected issues in a two-pager format.

    thumbnail_Governing areas beyond national jurisdiction issues brief Photo: IUCN

    Governing areas beyond national jurisdiction

    Nearly two-thirds of the world’s ocean is beyond national jurisdiction – where no single state has authority. This area reaches depths of over 10 km and represents 95% of the Earth’s total habitat by...
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