Undoubtedly, threats to the environment can be devastating to the human population. Left unchecked, such devastation can result in complicated environmental-related health problems, or result in significant global calamity. As often highlighted by environmentalists, pollution in any part of the world is pollution to the world due to the interconnectedness of the biosphere. Informed by such ideations, the global community sought to establish cross-regional protocols, guidelines, policies, and laws aimed at protecting the environment from a global perspective. The “Training Manual on International Environmental Law” is a publication of 2006, which summarizes most if not all globally agreed laws on protection to the earth’s environment. The 26 chapter document is expansive and detailed with case-studies from different parts of the world, but still, it is not without criticisms. The focus in this paper is to offer a response paper mainly on the last 13 chapters of the document.
Appreciating the Common Problem
Given the inability to restrain natural resources to a given locality, the only way to attain global environmental conservation goals is by nations coming together and working as one. The environmental laws have to a great extent helped in asserting the responsibility of the global community, tailored down to regional and national jurisdictions, in protecting the environment. A threat to the environment would mean a threat to the world population. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) elucidates the vitality of preserving the natural resources since ecological sustainability, economic viability, and social desirability guarantee the quality of life for current and subsequent generations.
A detailed study of transient epimastigote-like forms as intermediates in the differentiation of Trypanosoma cruzi amastigotes to trypomastigotes inside the host cell cytoplasm was undertaken using the CL-14 clone grown in cells maintained at 33 degrees C. Several parameters related to these forms have been compared with epimastigotes and other stages of the parasite. Consequently, the designation of intracellular epimastigotes is proposed for these forms. Despite being five times shorter (5.4 +/- 0.7 micrometer) than the extracellular epimastigote (25.2 +/- 2.1 micrometer), the overall morphology of the intracellular epimastigote is very similar to a bona fide epimastigote, when cell shape, position, and general aspect of organelles are compared by transmission electron microscopy. Epimastigotes from both sources are lysed by human complement and bind to DEAE-cellulose, in contrast to amastigotes and trypomastigote forms. A monoclonal antibody (3C5) reacts with both epimastigotes either isolated from axenic media or intracellular and very faintly with amastigotes, but not with trypomastigotes. Some differences of a quantitative nature are apparent between the two epimastigote forms when reactivities with lectins or stage-specific antibodies are compared, revealing the transient nature of the intracellular epimastigote. The epitope recognized by 3C5 monoclonal antibody reacts slightly more intensely with extracellular than with intracellular epimastigotes, as detected by immunoelectron microscopy. Also a very faint reaction of the intracellular epimastigotes was observed with monoclonal antibody 2C2, an antibody which recognizes a glycoprotein specific for the amastigote stage. Biological parameters as growth curves in axenic media and inhability to invade nonphagocytic tissue-cultured cells are similar in the epimastigotes from both origins. It is proposed that the epimastigote-like forms are an obligatory transitional stage in the transformation of amastigotes to trypomastigotes with a variable time of permanency in the host cell cytoplasm depending on environmental conditions.
Environmental Diversity and Safety
Chapters 14 -26 prescribes a body of laws created by states for states to govern issues of global environmental interest. Most of these natural resources and global concerns are shared across the board, and centralizing the laws at the country level can create notable conflicts, confusion, and challenges in implementing the laws. Having a single policy to govern such interest is the best practice in modern globalized and liberalized societies. For instance, Chapter 14 seeks to secure the conservation of endangered species, especially migratory species. When it comes to migration, the incidence is transboundary which would then require the collaboration of several states and state agencies to realize the effective and judicious implementation of the laws. Pouching, which had threatened to vanquish horned animals and those whose skin was considered valuable has been reduced dramatically through international collaboration. On such efforts, the international environmental laws have come in handy. The reality is, the human population enjoys the diversity and nations' make great use of such natural resources through tourism. It is, therefore, a win-win situation that preserves the environment and endangered species while at the same time encouraging economic activities through tourism.
A Healthy Environment Is Everything
The international community acknowledges the importance of conserving the environment given that a healthy environment would go a long way in promoting a healthy ecosystem for humans and the rest of the organisms. Chapter 22 delineates the interconnectedness between human rights and environmental laws. The chapter acknowledges the difference in actualizing human rights from different continents and nations in the world. However, the bottom line is that environmental laws cannot thrive or exist in a vacuum or contravention to human rights. The quoting of the South African constitution on Right to Life where the government has to protect the environment by preventing pollution and promoting ecological degradation illustrates the links between human and environmental rights.
Today's world is facing an unprecedented environmental crisis. Deterioration of the Earth's environment increasingly threatens the natural resource base and processes upon which all life on Earth depends. Without strong and multifaceted action by all of us, the biosphere may become unable to sustain human life and future generations will suffer deprivation and hardship unless current patterns of production, consumption and waste management dramatically change. The urgency of balancing development with the Earth's life support systems is being finally recognized and understood. Now it is time to act upon this understanding. It is widely recognized that most environmental problems, challenges and solutions are transboundary, regional or global in scope. The environment is an area where states and stakeholders are cooperating extensively and progressively. Although environmental degradation and competition for scarce resources are potential sources for conflict, history has repeatedly shown that they are more often catalysts for cooperation. Problems of shared resources regularly produce shared solutions. The environment can make its full and rightful contribution to peace and stability in the world. Worldwide commitments are necessary to protect environmental features such as the biosphere including the ozone layer, migratory species, habitats and ecosystems. Control of movement of wastes, environmentally harmful activities and installations can only be achieved by common and widely applied standards.
Environmental law is recognized as an effective tool for catalyzing national and international action to achieve such protection and control. As one of UNEP's priority areas, environmental law has expanded rapidly over the last decades and today comprises hundreds of global and regional norms that aim to protect our Earth. Without analyzing each of the hundreds of agreements and instruments in the field, this Training Manual seeks to provide a comprehensive overview of the current body of environmental law. It is aimed at legal stakeholders from all backgrounds including government representatives, judges, university professors and students from both developed and developing countries, to enable them to more effectively participate in the global, regional and national efforts to preserve our Earth for future generations. Specific topics are first presented at the international level and then followed by extracts of national legislation showcasing (Robinson and Kurukulasuriya 2006; p.311).
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