Environmental Policy and Law

The journal for decision-makers

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ISSN print
ISSN online
51; 6 issues
Last issue (51:3) online on 16 July 2021
Next issue
51:4 scheduled for September 2021
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Environmental Law, Environmental Sciences, Environmental Sciences
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Our Earth Matters Environmental Policy and Law (EPL) has published a special issue and book on the theme of Our Earth Matters, curated by the journal's new Editor-in-Chief Bharat H. Desai, PhD. The concent looks at new approaches, trajectories, and frameworks for international environmental governance. Discover more here. Contributors participated in a webinar on World Environment Day, June 5, 2021: Watch now!

New Look EPL 
– In 2020, coinciding with the landmark fiftieth volume, EPL underwent a makeover, with a new look, features, and website: environmentalpolicyandlaw.com.

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COVID-19 Statement – The COVID-19 crisis is affecting many lives, and also research initiatives. We appreciate the efforts of our editors, authors, and reviewers working on our journal at this difficult time. View the full Environmental Policy and Law (EPL) COVID-19 statement here.

Environmental Policy and Law (EPL) is an international, interdisciplinary journal that facilitates an understanding of environmental policy and law issues not only by drawing upon and contributing to the environmental social sciences, but also linking the health, natural, and computer sciences. The aim of the journal is to promote communication among academia, government, business and industry, and non-governmental organizations who are instrumental in the solving of environmental problems.
The journal’s scope encompasses a wide range of environmental and natural resource issues, including biodiversity loss, climate change, desertification, environmental pollution and wastes, forest conservation, ozone depletion, renewable and non-renewable natural resources, sustainability, transboundary pollutant flows, and the management of marine and fresh-water resources, and the interaction among these issues. It emphasizes links between these environmental issues and social and economic issues such as production, transport, consumption, growth, demographic changes, well-being, and health. EPL publishes policy commentaries, research reports, a range of peer-reviewed content, including review articles, and more. The journal invites analyses that are at the forefront of academic debate and that are of practical significance and policy relevance.
By bridging both academic and professional domains, the journal provides professionals, practitioners, researchers, students, and policymakers, and any other persons with information on developments in the field of international and regional environmental policy and law and domestic environmental policy and law of developing countries.


In January 2017, it was with deep sadness that we announced the passing of Dr. Wolfgang E. Burhenne, who was the founding Editor-in-Chief of Environmental Policy and Law. For a tribute, please visit this website.  


Bharat H. Desai, PhD
Jawaharlal Nehru University, Centre for International Legal Studies
New Delhi, India
Email: desai@jnu.ac.in

Marten Stavenga
IOS Press
Amsterdam, NL
Email: m.stavenga@iospress.nl

Founding Editor
Wolfgang E. Burhenne

Honorary Editor
Achim Steiner

Associate Editors
Elisa Morgera, PhD, University of Strathclyde Law School, Glasgow, UK

Melanie Jean Murcott, LLD, University of Pretoria, Department of Public Law, Pretoria, South Africa

Walters Nsoh, PhD, Birmingham Law School, University of Birmingham, Birmingham, UK

Tiina Paloniitty, LLD, Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science and Faculty of Law, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland

David C. Smith, PhD, The University of the West Indies, Institute for Sustainable Development, Kingston, Jamaica

Tomme R. Young, Paso Robles, CA, USA

Editorial Board
Bagher Asadi, MA, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador, Tehran, Iran

Ioannis Athanasiadis, PhD, Laboratory of Geo-Information Science and Remote Sensing, Wageningen University, Wageningen, NL

Ilker K. Basaran, PhD, Bahcesehir University, Istanbul, Turkey

Milena Bellini, MA, ICEL International Council for Environmental Law Towards Sustainable Development, Geneva, Switzerland

Benjamin Boer, LLM, The University of Sydney Law School, Sydney, Australia

Antonio Herman Benjamin, PhD, National High Court, Brasília, Brazil

Michael Bothe, LLD, Goethe University, Professor of Public Law, Frankfurt, Germany

Edith Brown Weiss, PhD, Georgetown University, Georgetown Law, Washington, DC, USA

Malcolm Forster, University of Wisconsin, Department of Philosophy, Madison, WI, USA

David Freestone, LLD, George Washington University, Law School, Washington, DC, USA

Eeva Furman, PhD, Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, Helsinki, Finland

Ian Fry, PhD, Australian National University, Fenner School of Environment & Society, Canberra, Australia

Camena Guneratne, PhD, Open University of Sri Lanka, Department of Legal Studies, Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka

Parvez Hassan, LLD, Supreme Court of Pakistan, Islamabad, Pakistan

Alejandro Iza, LLD, IUCN Environmental Law Programme, Environmental Law Centre, Bonn, Germany

Marlene Jahnke, Former Editor of Environmental Policy and Law, Bangor, UK

Mireille Jardin, UNESCO,Ecological Sciences for Sustainable Development, Paris, France

Eduardo Astorga Jorquera, University of Alicante, San Vicente del Raspeig, Spain

Donald W. Kaniaru, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Nairobi, Kenya

Koh Kheng Lian, PhD, National University of Singapore, Faculty of Law, Singapore, Singapore

Veit Koester, Ministry of the Environment, Copenhagen, Denmark

Michelle Lim, PhD, Macquarie University, Macquarie Law School, Sydney, Australia

Dan Magraw, JD, Johns Hopkins University, School of Advanced International Studies, Washington, DC, USA

Stephen McCaffrey, JD, University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, Sacramento, CA, USA

Mohamed Ali Mekouar, University of Casablanca, Casablanca, Morocco

Patricia Moore, PhD, University of Georgia, Department of Entomology, Athens, GA, USA

Charles di Leva, LD, World Bank, Environmental and Social Standards, Washington, DC, USA

Charles Odidi Okidi, PhD, University of Nairobi, Nairobi, Kenya

Michel Prieur, International Centre for Comparative Environmental Law, Paris, France

Ann Powers, JD, Pace University, Pace Law School, New York, NY, USA

Walter J. Rademacher, PhD, Sapienza University of Rome, Department of Statistical Sciences, Rome, Italy

Eckard Rehbinder, LLD, Goethe University, Environmental Law Research Institute, Frankfurt, Germany

Nicholas Robinson, JD, Pace University, Pace Law School, New York, NY, USA

Tullio Scovazzi, University of Milano-Bicocca, School of Law, Milan, Italy

Dinah Shelton, JD, George Washington University, Law School, Washington, DC, USA

Balraj K. Sidhu, PhD, Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, Rajiv Gandhi School of Intellectual Property Law, Kharagpur, India

Cleo Verkuijl, LLM, Stockholm Environment Instute, SEI Oxford, Oxford, UK

Christina Voigt, JD, University of Oslo, Department of Public and International Law, Oslo, Norway

Rüdiger Wolfrum, JD, Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law, Heidelberg, Germany


By submitting my article to this journal, I agree to the IOS Press License to Publish: iospress.com/service/authors/author-copyright-agreement and the IOS Press Privacy Policy: iospress.com/privacy-policy.

Authors are requested to submit their manuscript electronically to the journal’s peer review management system: editorialmanager.com/epl

No Publication Fee
Environmental Policy and Law does not charge a publication fee.

Peer Review Process and Process for Appeals
Environmental Policy and Law operates a rigorous, timely, blinded peer review process (with an option for double-blind if requested) by experts in the field. Manuscripts submitted to Environmental Policy and Law will be assessed for suitability for publication in the journal by the Managing Editors. Manuscripts that are deemed unsuitable may be rejected without peer review by the Managing Editors and/or the Associate Editors, and the author will be informed as soon as possible. Manuscripts that are deemed suitable for peer review are forwarded to an Associate Editor with expertise in that area who then recruits appropriate anonymous referees (a minimum of two) for confidential review. Referee reports are then assessed by the Associate Editor, who makes a decision which is then subject to approval of the Managing Editors. Once approved this decision is then conveyed to the author along with the referee’s anonymized reports.

The initial decision will be one of the following: rejection, acceptance without revision, or potentially acceptable after minor or major revisions. Revised manuscripts will be appraised by the Associate Editor, who may seek the opinion of referees (prior or new) before making a decision, which again is subject to approval of the Managing Editors. Once approved, this decision is then conveyed to the author along with the anonymized referee’s reports. Once accepted, manuscripts are normally published on-line without delay and appear in the on of the next available print issues.

The Managing Editors have ultimate responsibility for what is published in the journal. Authors may appeal decisions by contacting the Managing Editors (by ending an email to editorial@iospress.com, with the manuscript reference number in the subject line). Authors will be informed in writing of the result of their appeal.



Organization of the paper and style of presentation
Manuscripts must be written in English. Authors whose native language is not English are advised to seek the advice of a native English speaker, before submitting their manuscripts.

Submissions of up to 8,000 words are welcome.

Peerwith offers a language and copyediting service to all scientists who want to publish their manuscript in scientific peer-reviewed periodicals and books.

Manuscripts should be prepared with wide margins and double spacing throughout, including the abstract, footnotes and references. Every page of the manuscript, including the title page, references, tables, etc., should be numbered. However, in the text no reference should be made to page numbers; if necessary, one may refer to sections. Try to avoid the excessive use of italics and bold face.

Manuscripts should be organized in the following order:

  • Title page
  • Body of text (divided by subheadings)
  • Acknowledgements
  • References
  • Tables
  • Figure captions
  • Figures

Headings and subheadings should be numbered and typed on a separate line, without indentation.

SI units should be used, i.e., the units based on the metre, kilogramme, second, etc.

Title page
The title page should provide the following information:

  • Title (should be clear, descriptive and not too long)
  • Name(s) of author(s); please indicate who is the corresponding author
  • Full affiliation(s)
  • Present address of author(s), if different from affiliation
  • Complete address of corresponding author, including telephone number and email address
  • Abstract; should be clear, descriptive, self-explanatory and not longer than 200 words, it should also be suitable for publication in abstracting services
  • Keywords

Number as Table 1, Table 2, etc., and refer to all of them in the text.
Each table should be provided on a separate page of the manuscript. Tables should not be included in the text.
Each table should have a brief and self-explanatory title.
Column headings should be brief, but sufficiently explanatory. Standard abbreviations of units of measurement should be added between parentheses.
Vertical lines should not be used to separate columns. Leave some extra space between the columns instead.
Any explanations essential to the understanding of the table should be given in footnotes at the bottom of the table.

Footnotes and Endnotes
The only footnote in the article shall be the “author footnote(s)” giving the author’s title and affiliation in three sentences or less. Each author shall have a separate author footnote. Author footnotes shall be numbered by superscript symbols, beginning with an asterisk (*).

Citations shall be noted as endnotes, numbered as 1, 2, 3, etc. Lengthy endnotes should only be used if absolutely essential. In most cases it is possible to incorporate the information in the text. Lists of References will substitute for endnotes, but should not be additional. References that are not mentioned in text will be deleted. Separate Bibliographies should not be submitted.

Endnotes should be numbered in the text, indicated by superscript numbers and kept as short as possible.


Authors are encouraged to submit figures, tables, photographs and other illustrations for inclusion in the publication, and are responsible for any necessary permissions relative to use of these materials (see below). EPL may, in some cases, include relevant illustrations and figures, selected with attention to the content of the article.


Copyright of your article
Authors submitting a manuscript do so on the understanding that they have read and agreed to the terms of the IOS Press Author Copyright Agreement.

Quoting from other publications
An author, when quoting from someone else's work or when considering reproducing figures or table from a book or journal article, should make sure that he is not infringing a copyright. Although in general an author may quote from other published works, he should obtain permission from the holder of the copyright if he wishes to make substantial extracts or to reproduce tables, plates or other figures. If the copyright holder is not the author of the quoted or reproduced material, it is recommended that the permission of the author should also be sought. Material in unpublished letters and manuscripts is also protected and must not be published unless permission has been obtained. Submission of a paper will be interpreted as a statement that the author has obtained all the necessary permission. A suitable acknowledgement of any borrowed material must always be made.

This journal publishes all its articles in the IOS Press pre-press module. By publishing articles ahead of print the latest research can be accessed much quicker. The pre-press articles are the uncorrected proof versions of the article and are published online shortly after the proof is created. Pre-press articles are fully citable by using the DOI number.
As soon as the pre-press article is assigned to an issue, the author corrections will be incorporated and final bibliographic information will be added. The pre-press version will then be replaced by the updated, final version

Open Access option
The IOS Press Open Library® offers authors an Open Access (OA) option. By selecting the OA option, the article will be freely available from the moment it is published, also in the pre-press module. In the Open Library® the article processing charges are paid in the form of an Open Access Fee. Authors will receive an Open Access Order Form upon acceptance of their article. Open Access is entirely optional.

See the IOS Press Open Library® section of our website for more information about this option, and also to check if there are any instutional agreements that you might be eligible for.


Authors of published articles (non-prepress, final articles) will be contacted by Kudos. Kudos is a service that helps researchers maximize the impact and visibility of their research. It allows authors to enrich their articles with lay metadata, add links to related materials and promote their articles through the Kudos system to a wider public. Authors will receive no more than three emails: one invitation and a maximum of two reminders to register for the service and link the published article to their profile. Using and registering for Kudos remains entirely optional. For more information, please have a look at our section for authors here.

IOS Press will seek to promote your article via this website, content platform, social media (follow the EPL Twitter here and tag us if you tweet about your work) and through the journal's newsletter. Be sure to sign up to the mailing (via this link) so you can forward it on to your colleagues and spread the news of your article.

The marketing team at IOS Press will be in contact with you to once your article is published in regard to promotional matters. If you wish to answer some questions for a Q&A to be published on our blog, please get in touch by email. Would you like some other pointers on how to help your research achieve a wider reach and greater impact? Please consult our Promotional Toolkit for Authors for tips.

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Current Global Environmental Law and Policy Are Failing, Experts Say

02 Jun 2021 - Amsterdam, NL – On the eve of the 50th anniversary of the 1972 Stockholm conference that created the United Nations Environmental Programme, it is clear that the global environmental situation has only deteriorated. In "Our Earth Matters: Pathways to a Better Common Environmental Future" – an extended special issue of Environmental Policy and Law (EPL) – leading scholars from more than five continents call for an honest introspection of what has been attained over the last 50 years relating to regulatory processes and laws and explore future trajectories with new ideas and frameworks for environmental governance in the 21st century....

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