“The law must be stable but it must not be still.” – Roscoe Pound
As an outgrowth of the Stockholm Conference that established the United Nations Environmental Program, the Rio Earth Summit (1992), the Paris Agreement (2015) as well as other legal principles or norms discussed below, Global Public Law (GPL) is the progressive application and enforcement of the rule of law to the entire Earth and its biodiversity . In essence, GPL, in the first instance, is based upon the fundamental necessity for an international legal order that ensures the self-preservation of nations and nature in the Anthropocene. In this regard, the English Philosopher Thomas Hobbes declared that self-preservation is the first Law of Nature, stating:
“A Law of Nature (Lex Naturalis) is a precept or general rule, found out by reason, by which a man is forbidden to do that which is destructive of his life or taketh away the means of preserving the same”.
in short, self-preservation is a fundamental instinct and duty of living sapient beings.
For Hobbes, such self-preservation includes not only the individual but the necessity of securing the “means of preserving the same.” As living beings, we are definitely and intimately connected to the natural world – hereafter referred to as nature – ranging from local ecologies to vast global commons necessary for life, as your next breath of air attests. So, the Law of Nature demands that, first and foremost, we preserve life as well as all the ecological means—including the global commons and Earth’s ecologies, that are necessary to support and sustain life on this planet.
Global Climate Change Now Threatens Self-Preservation
The current international legal order is failing to protect us from largely human-caused global climate change, thus threatening our self-preservation as individuals, societies, and
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