This article analyzes the American Clean Energy and Security Act under international environmental law and standards. The Act requires that importers pay a fee if certain requirements regarding the country and sector are satisfied. The article presents general difficulties with enforcing international environmental law, namely, the absence of a unitary government. Next, the article describes the following sources of international law: custom, treaties, soft law, and non-binding declarations. I conclude that the carbon tariffs from the American Clean Energy and Security Act are inconsistent with both hard and soft international environmental law.
GW Paper Series
GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2012-139, GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 2012-139
Steve Charnovitz, Reviewing Carbon Changes and Free Allowances Under Environmental Law, 16 ILSA J. Int’l. & Comp. L. 395 (2010).