(P26) Resilience, Inequality and Environmental Governance
Bridget Hutter, Professor Risk Regulation, London School of Economics & Political Science
The environmental challenges of the twenty-first century raise profound questions about how suited the law is to manage the complex problems that confront us. There have been changes in our understandings of the effects of human activities on our environment and how we see and frame problems. There has been a widening recognition that the effects of environmental pollution are not just local but national, transnational and global. We appreciate more keenly the deep inequalities attaching to both the exacerbation of environmental risks and their ill-effects. One consequence of this trend has been the growing popularity of risk management tools which have become central to some environmental regulatory regimes and are increasingly augmented by resilience strategies which give a far greater emphasis to uncertainty, flexibility and the down-stream management of problems. Resilience accepts that things will go wrong, whereas notions of risk management convey messages of controllability.
This panel critically examines how able these regulatory approaches are to effect equitable solutions to environmental risks; and raises important questions about multi-level and participatory governance. It considers how the law copes with environmental risks and uncertainties whilst promoting resilience and greater equality and it does so with reference to global and regional regulatory governance.