Negotiating Multilateral Environmental Agreements on Wildlife Conservation: The Case Study of Kenya
Mbugua, Paul K
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This study set out to examine the negotiations of Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs)on Wildlife Conservation. It sought to answer the question “what is it that drives states to negotiate and conclude treaties?” The study also sought to establish what the challenges and opportunities are in relation to these agreements. The methodology of investigation employed included a look at various other MEAs and dimensions of how states negotiated, ratified and implemented them. An analysis of state decisions and what influenced them to make these decisions the way they did informed this study. The study found out that many developed countries are driven by commercial interests and that environmental matters are least of their concerns. The environment is an important component of the world that provide for the needs of the global inhabitants. The resources required are from the hydrosphere, lithosphere, biosphere and atmosphere and these are not finite. They diminish with continued extraction and the passage of time. This raises a concern between and among states over their management, access, control and exploitation. Increase in global human population is exerting enormous pressure on these resources. Use of fossil fuels has grown to levels hitherto unimaginable over a span of a century. Use of Chloro-fluorocarbons (CFC) and other ozone depleting agents have also increased impacting the environment negatively. Social and environmental pressure is magnified by demands for environmental goods and services. The resultant competition for resource access, use and control is the cause for conflicts between states that necessitates formulation of agreements. Demand for food and other requirements from the environment have increased. Space has become smaller while competition over the same between humans and other living creatures has increased. Commerce now drives world economies and competition over resources has become intense. Resources such as the atmosphere, oceans, outer space, river systems and biodiversity which straddles international borders require states to come together to agree on modalities of their governance. States can have control of resources within their borders but collaborate over those not confined within their boundaries. Multilateral Environmental Agreements negotiated and concluded under the auspices of the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) provide states with a means of coming up with treaties that help alleviate conflicts between states. This study recommends that in order for states to take environmental matters seriously, there is a need for them to be bound equally by treaties. It also recommends that teams from developing countries prepare their delegates to Cop meetings in order to help them have their own voice in these forums.
University of Nairobi