The World Trade Organization and Climate Change: Challenges and Options

Gary Clyde Hufbauer (PIIE) and Jisun Kim (PIIE)
Working Paper
09-9
September 2009

Trade and environment intersect in many ways. Aside from the broad debate as to whether economic growth and trade adversely affect the environment, there are linkages between existing rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and rules established in various Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs). The main objectives of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and WTO regimes are to combat climate change and to promote sustainable development. Controlling greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions promises to be a top priority for both national and international agendas, and special attention must be given to the relationship between the WTO and the emerging international regime on climate change. There are several options for how the WTO and UNFCCC can approach trade and environment issues including acting multilaterally to create norms on trade and climate, going on a case-by-case basis within the WTO judicial process, and waivers or amendments to current WTO legal text to accommodate environmental controls.

More From

Gary Clyde Hufbauer Senior Research Staff
Biography
Jisun Kim Research Analysts

More on This Topic

Op-Eds
Aaditya Mattoo (The World Bank) and Arvind Subramanian (PIIE)
May 4, 2013
Policy Brief
Aaditya Mattoo (The World Bank) and Arvind Subramanian (PIIE)
April 2013
Op-Eds
C. Fred Bergsten (PIIE) and Lori Wallach (Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch)
November 13, 2009