Evaluate the role and effectiveness of international conferences and institutions in achieving environmental protection

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Evaluate the role and effectiveness of international conferences and institutions in achieving environmental protection. In your answer, make reference to barriers to achieving an international response to global environmental protection. (25 marks) In relation to the global environment, international institutions and conferences are generally effective in its role of protection. In establishing soft law guidelines and holding conferences, international institutions such as the United Nations (1945) and the International Court of Justice (1945) provide nation states with a framework or recommendations to abide by if ratified. The 1972 Stockholm conference marked the first international conference on the environment regarding the transboundary responsibilities of countries and principles such as intergenerational equity. This saw the increased involvement of the UN and ICJ and eventually further international conferences such as the Vienna Convention (1985), the Montreal Conference (1989), Rio de Janerio Earth Summit (1992) and the Kyoto conference (1997) regarding global threats such as climate change and ozone depletion. However, the existence of state sovereignty as well as the political and economic interests of countries remains barriers for cooperation between nations. Thus, highlighting the ineffectiveness of international law in its role of achieving global environmental protection. The growing awareness of global threats such as ozone depletion led to international calls for the reduction of ozone depletion pollutants, CFC's and nitrate oxides. The Vienna Conference of 1985 attempted to raise global awareness of the dire impacts of ozone depletion including increased rates of skin cancer/UV exposure and damage to agriculture. The recognition of these negative impacts by nation states led to the establishment of soft law guidelines and recommendations and four years later, introduction of hard-law targets. Under the Montreal Protocol (1989),

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