Environmental Issues In The Ftaa
Paper presented at the 24th West Indies Agricultural Economics Conference, Granada, July 19-12, 2002. Environmental issues have become important in trade agreement negotiations. NAFTA explicitly includes environmental provisions and they are affecting ongoing WTO and FTAA negotiations. The final role of the environment in the FTAA is uncertain, given opposition by most of the members. The draft FTAA agreement does not contain a separate section on the environment, but a U.S. position paper indicates that environmental provisions are important and that U.S. negotiators will seek to incorporate environmental concerns into specific chapters such those on investment and agriculture. The large number and varied economic and environmental conditions of the 34 countries in the FTAA, make it difficult to include meaningful environmental provisions in the agreement, but environmentalists are seeking them and the inclusion of such provisions in the NAFTA and WTO agreements will tend to make it difficult to get approval of future agreements that do not address environmental issues or at least that do not guard against creating pollution havens or that encourage laxness in environmental protection. This paper examines environmental and trade issues in the context of the FTAA negotiations including analyses of environmental conditions in the region and the pros and cons of their inclusion in the FTAA and other trade agreements.
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