United We Stand, Divided We Fall: The Case for a World Environment Organization


  • Sachin Persaud


The first global response to the impending crisis of climate change occurred with the creation of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in 1972. Since then, conferences have been convened, agreements have been adopted, and another body has been formed without any substantial global progress on the environment having transpired. I examine how current institutional arrangements have failed and prescribe the construction of a World Environment Organization (WEO) as a normative remedy. Such a body would need to be well resourced, with its mandate expanded to the effect that it could compete against the legally binding edicts of the World Trade Organization (WTO). A WEO could also replace dishevelled inter-state action on climate change with centralized, international agreement, implementation, and enforcement of initiatives. I also explore the moral obligation the industrialized North has to assist the underdeveloped South in actualizing the latter’s environmental commitments, and mechanisms that would give the South a greater degree of decision-making power than it presently has. Liberal market environmentalism, an anti-thesis to the proposed WEO, is explained and rebutted. The role of Canada’s current administration in the global response to environmental degradation is likewise studied and critiqued. Though the conclusions I draw from my survey of the literature are normative, I utilize various examples in current affairs to suggest that a productive, cooperative WEO can realistically be consummated.


How to Cite

Persaud, S. (2017). United We Stand, Divided We Fall: The Case for a World Environment Organization. Revue YOUR Review (York Online Undergraduate Research), 2, 130. Retrieved from https://yourreview.journals.yorku.ca/index.php/yourreview/article/view/40385



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