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Soft Law with Hidden Teeth: The Case for a FAO International Plan of Action on Sea Turtles

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Lugten, GL (2006) Soft Law with Hidden Teeth: The Case for a FAO International Plan of Action on Sea Turtles. Journal of International Wildlife Law and Policy, 9 (2). pp. 155-173. ISSN 1388-0292

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Abstract

The purpose of this article is to evaluate the legal status of the FAO International Plans of Action, and assess whether a new FAO IPOA on sea turtles could achieve any significant protection for creatures experiencing “a catastrophic decline in populations.” The paper is divided into three parts. Part 2 provides an overview on the plight of sea turtles and the numerous threats to their continued existence which occur both on land and at sea. Part 3 of the paper looks to the four current FAO International Plans of Action, their status in law, and the potential effectiveness of a fifth IPOA dealing with sea turtles. Part 4 of the paper presents an argument for the customary law status of the IPOAs. The paper submits that to the extent that the law (as distinct from education of fishers and coastal communities, developments in fishing gear technology, or application of better management policies) can conserve the sea turtles, a FAO International Plan of Action on sea turtles, along with the other FAO IPOAs, may be soft law instruments with hidden teeth.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of International Wildlife Law and Policy
Page Range: pp. 155-173
ISSN: 1388-0292
Identification Number - DOI: 10.1080/13880290600728179
Date Deposited: 14 Dec 2007 04:16
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2014 03:26
URI: http://eprints.utas.edu.au/id/eprint/2686
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