September 21, 2006
Protecting the Environment in Times of War
Michael Bothe, Professor emeritus, Johann Wolfgang Goethe University, Frankfurt/Main, provided an overview of the history and legal development of protection of the environment during armed conflict. He surveyed the development of legal restraints on the conduct of war, particularly those that address environmental concerns. Professor Bothe concluded that while the protection of the environment constitutes a well-established element of the law of armed conflict, the interpretation and application of international humanitarian law must be strengthened. In addition, he recommended further development of the law, particularly with regard to the protection of environmentally valuable spaces during armed conflict.
Following Professor Bothe’s presentation, Mishkat Al Moumin, ELI Futrell Visiting Scholar and former Minister of the Environment for Iraq, and Carl Bruch, ELI Senior Attorney and Co-Director of International Programs, provided comments on Professor Bothe’s conclusions and recommendations.