Fresh Water in International Law (2nd edition)
Laurence Boisson de Chazournes
£95, Oxford University Press
The visionary science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke used to warn that it was inappropriate to call this planet Earth when it was clearly water.
Clarke was right as around 70% of the Earth’s surface is water. However less than 2.5% of it is fresh water, of which 70% is frozen with only the remainder suitable for human consumption.
Considering climate change and the fact that the world’s population is three times bigger than a century ago, that makes fresh water far from (as many wrongly believe) an inexhaustible resource.
This book is an incredible journey of discovery. The law on fresh water crosses many different sectors: from national laws to environmental law, from public international law to human rights. With the commodification of water, there is an economic dimension too.
As the author rightly points out, any analysis of water resources requires the interconnection between all sources of water to be considered. The author argues for more consistent law and regulation concerning fresh water (for instance on icebergs, glaciers and atmospheric water), and a broad governance that, taking into account the cross-dependency of countries on water, is uniform and international.
Chapter one introduces fresh water and its features. Chapter two deals with the evolution, scope and development of the regulation of fresh water. From chapter three to chapter five, the book covers the law applicable to fresh water, particularly its economisation, environmentalisation and its humanisation. Chapter six deals with the institutionalisation of governance of fresh water. Finally, dispute settlement is analysed, and the author concludes with future trends and prospects.
This is a key monograph on a serious but often little regarded topic. It is well-researched and structured, and therefore highly recommended to a wide variety of scholars (academics, students and practitioners, regardless of their level of specific expertise on the topic).
Dr Carlo Corcione is a lawyer and manager specialising in trade, shipping and logistics
The Law in 60 Seconds: A Pocket Guide to Your Rights
£8.99, Profile Books
What laws would you carry with you in your pocket if you went outside? That is the essence of this pocket guide to the basic knowledge of legal rights we all need. These are not all human rights, although they come in to it, but rather the laws the public needs to know in order to survive. Street law, if you like.
So what legal knowledge would you take around with you? It depends on what you are planning to do, but a knowledge of consumer law, travel rights, employment, money and relationships would be essential, along with knowledge on what happens if you get into conflict with the authorities. This book contains a list of useful organisations.
It is packed with concise, useful facts and tells you how to defend yourself in a pub fight. So just what we need!
David Pickup is a partner at Pickup & Scott Solicitors, Aylesbury