This essay analyzes the legal meaning of “intergenerational equity” and evaluates the practical implementation of the concept. The essay begins by considering the meaning of the two terms in the phrase: “intergenerational” and “equity.” It then looks at the various rationales given for concern with this topic and how they link to the topic of solidarity, followed by an overview of some of the main subject areas in which the issue of intergenerational equity arises. It proceeds to assess the status of intergenerational equity in international law and to identify various principles associated with the concept. Finally, it turns to a discussion of how intergenerational equity as a form of solidarity might be implemented in practice.
GW Paper Series
GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2013-53; GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 2013-53
Dinah Shelton, Intergenerational Equity, in SOLIDARITY: A STRUCTURAL PRINCIPLE OF INTERNATIONAL LAW 123 (Rüdige Wolfrum & Chie Kojima eds., Springer 2010).