Douglas M Johnston Lectures
The Douglas M Johnston Lecture is an annual lecture that began in 2009 to honour the late Douglas M Johnson. Invited speakers are selected for their demonstrated leadership in the field of public policy and their interest in promoting social and environmental justice.
Douglas M Johnston was a leading teacher, scholar, and writer in the international marine and environmental law community. His numerous contributions to the Schulich School of Law included the development of the marine and environmental law program, the strengthening of the graduate program and the enhancement of the faculty's strong scholarly reputation. He published ground-breaking scholarly works on the regulation of international fisheries, the theory of ocean-boundary, treaty law and the history of international law. His last book, which he completed very shortly before he died, received a posthumous award from the American Society of International Law.
8th ANNUAL DOUGLAS M JOHNSTON LECTURE
Elizabeth Mrema, Director Division of Environmental Law and Conventions United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
"Progressive Global Environmental Constitutionalism and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development"
The state of the global environment is deteriorating, despite the expanding body of international environmental law. Today, three quarters of the world’s constitutions contain references to environmental provisions. What does this mean as we focus on delivering on the environmental dimension of Agenda 2030? Tentatively titled “Progressive Environmental Constitutionalism and the 2030 Agenda”, this talk will highlight that, although it is still a relatively new concept, there is a discernible trend towards the constitutionalisation of environmental care that enables the identification of the emergence of a specialised focused form of constitutionalism that is solely concerned with environmental matters.
Environmental constitutionalism, which "represents the confluence of constitutional law, international law, human rights, and environmental law" embodies a transformative approach that relies on constitutions to provide for the architecture of environmental governance and improve environmental protection through various constitutional features such as fundamental rights and duties, principles of environmental governance, and the rule of law. Given prevailing socio-political, environmental and economic conditions as well as the immensely divergent legal cultures of a kaleidoscopic world, what do the specific elements and reach of environmental constitutionalism in different countries look like?
The talk will explain, using a few country examples, why this is an important apex of regulatory phenomenon, both at the analytical and normative levels, and how it can be (and is being) used especially with a view to strengthening the institutions of environmental law and governance in the context of implementing Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development.
Download the lecture here.
Douglas M Johnston Lectures: 2009 - 2016
7th Annual Douglas M Johnston Lecture
6th Annual Douglas M Johnston Lecture
5th Annual Douglas M Johnston Ocean Governance Lecture
4th Annual Douglas M Johnston Lecture
3rd Annual Douglas M Johnston Lecture
"Polar Ocean Governance in the Twenty-First Century"
2nd Annual Douglas M Johnston Lecture
1st Annual Douglas M Johnston Lecture