POSTED: Jan 27, 2023

Law
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Tracing technologies for a more effective International Environmental Law
Marcelo Feitosa De Paula Dias

Master of Laws

QUT

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There has yet to be a consensus in academia concerning building a foundational basis for establishing a standard definition of traceability. This lack of general agreement may lead to different perceptions among stakeholders of what traceability, tracing and tracking represent concerning their utility in tracking and assessing global natural resources and monitoring supply chains. Increased understanding of how we can utilise the process of traceability, tracing and monitoring is critical to help us better manage global native forests and reduce the pressure on existing ones. The utility of tracing technologies to produce significant amounts of timely and precise data is increasingly recognised and valued in improving the natural environment management process. Traceability devices like radio frequency identification, blockchain, barcoding, and radar can facilitate tracing and tracking. They enable and increase the depth and range of information available about how we use the natural world. If adequately used, these technologies can help us overcome the battle against nature's most repulsive mismanagement practices assisting the most vulnerable nations in breaking the vicious circle of poor natural resources control and administration. Additionally, they increase the trust among stakeholders and enhance transparency and accountability, fostering the implementation of more collaborative practices between players. My work aims to investigate how these qualities can facilitate better legal and governance decisions in the context of conserving and enhancing the integrity of native forests around the world. More generally, international environmental law and governance initiatives have benefitted from the availability of tracing technologies. My research will identify and assess how they are used for legal and governance ends. Some countries have done more however to embed tracing technologies into decision-making about the conservation and restoration of native forests. This study will look to Australia, European Union, and the United States as examples to speculate the potential of tracing for international law and governance initiatives around native forest stewardship. Conserving and enhancing the quality of native forests is a significant goal internationally, and this thesis argues that tracing technologies have unrealised potential for developing governance initiatives and activities.


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