David R. Boyd’s book entitled, The Environmental Rights Revolution: A Global Study of Constitutions, Human Rights, and the Environment, provides a comprehensive overview of nations that have incorporated the right to a healthy environment in their constitutions. Throughout his research, Boyd analyzes the effectiveness of environmental protection provisions in national constitutions and seeks to determine whether constitutional provisions guaranteeing the right to a healthy environment have measurable, positive effects on the environment. His wide-ranging compilation and analysis of environmental rights provisions in numerous countries is an important contribution to international human rights literature. Although Boyd explains that treating the right to a healthy environment as a fundamental human right is not a new idea, his broad research demonstrates that many national constitutions have, in fact, adopted enforceable environmental protection provisions, particularly the right to a healthy environment. Boyd’s research provides concrete examples of how the constitutional right to a healthy environment, and national legislation guaranteeing that right, have had positive environmental consequences. He predicts that in the future these rights will continue to help combat the effects of global climate change and environmental degradation that permeate national borders to enable the world to achieve the goal of sustainable development.
35 Hum. Rts. Q. 1021 (2013)