European Parliament Library

Biosafety measures, technology risks and the World Trade Organization, thriving and surviving in the age of biotech, Alessandra Guida

"This book examines the work of the World Trade Organization (WTO), with a focus on the capacity of its judiciary to strike a reasoned balance between free trade in biotechnology and biosafety as to promote the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its Sustainable Development Goals. By adopting an innovative interpretation of the precautionary principle and proportionality analysis, the work offers normative suggestions to develop what the author terms "a constructive bridge of knowledge" between decision-makers, scientists, social experts, and expert witnesses, which can support a judicial balance by design, rather than by chance. Biotechnology is sometimes regarded as a panacea for modern-day challenges, such as feeding a growing world population and counteracting climate-change problems, and a means of offering significant economic opportunities. However, biotechnology can present uncertain, though serious, risks to human health and the environment (i.e., biosafety). Trading biotech products magnifies these risks and benefits globally. This book explores the topical, though still underexplored, question of how to find a point of equilibrium between the revolutionary advancement offered by technology and the need to safeguard biosafety from uncertain, though potentially irreversible, technology risks. It offers a thorough analysis of normative, judicial, and epistemic issues hindering a reasoned balance between trade and non-trade interests under the WTO. The work offers practical relevance for the resolution of legal disputes in contexts of uncertainty, as well as innovative theoretical contributions. It will be a valuable resource for policy-makers working on precautionary governance and management, scholars in the areas of trade law, human rights law, and environmental law, law students and practitioners, as well as NGOs working in the field of new technologies, biosafety, sustainability and food safety"--, Provided by publisher
Table Of Contents
Cover -- Half Title -- Title -- Copyright -- Dedication -- Contents -- Detailed Contents -- Acknowledgements -- List of treaties and declarations -- List of cases -- List of figures and tables -- Glossary -- Part I Context - international trade in biotechnology -- 1 International trade in biotechnology and protection of biosafety: an uneasy combination -- 1.1 Introduction -- 1.2 Discovering biotechnology: benefits, risks and social issues in trading biotech products -- 1.2.1 Benefits in trading biotech products -- Biotechnology and the reduction of hunger -- Biotechnology and economic development -- 1.2.2 Risks in trading biotech products -- Risks to human health -- Risks to the environment -- 1.2.3 Social issues in trading biotech products -- 1.3 Challenges in international trade in biotechnology -- 1.4 Legal loopholes: the need for proportionality analysis and a precautionary approach -- 1.5 Objectives of the study -- 1.6 Methodology of the study -- 1.7 Scope of the study -- 1.8 Structure of the study -- Part II Addressing normative, judicial and epistemic challenges in trading biotechnology under the WTO -- 2 Normative, judicial and epistemic challenges for the WTO: free trade and biosafety -- 2.1 Introduction -- 2.2 The WTO: role, mandate and dispute settlement body -- 2.3 Protection of human health and the environment as WTO goals -- 2.4 Requirements to protect human health and the environment under the WTO -- 2.4.1 Ensuring human health and the environment in the context of the GATT Agreement -- Chapeau of Article XX: general requirements to prevent unjustifiable trade limitations -- Article XX(b) and (g): general exceptions to ensure the protection of health and the environment -- 2.4.2 Ensuring human health and the environment in the context of the SPS and TBT Agreements
Literary Form
non fiction
Physical Description
1 online resource (354 pages)
Specific Material Designation
Form Of Item


Library Locations

  • EP Library Brussels

    60 rue Wiertz, Brussels, B-1047, BE
  • EP Library Luxembourg

    Rue du Fort Thüngen, Luxembourg, L-1313, LU
  • EP Library Strasbourg

    7 Place Adrien Zeller, Allée du Printemps, Strasbourg, F-67070, FR