The principle of integration of the economic, social, and environmental factors of sustainable development

Ángel J. Rodrigo Hernández
Profesor Titular Derecho Internacional Público, Universidad Pompeu Fabra (Tenured Professor International Law, University Pompeu Fabra).

The principle of integration is arguably the most appropriate and most specific legal principle available to International Law for attaining the objective of sustainable development, since it is the principle that best captures the true significance of the notion of sustainable development and because it is the most operative legal principle. The principle calls for the integration of all the economic, social and environmental factors associated with sustainable development both when drawing up the legal norms and when applying them.

The main argument defended in this article is that the principle of integration could be a good instrument to promote relations between international regimes because it operates transversally, thereby it can facilitate internormative relations between the regulations of different regimes and so furnish more complex legal responses. Furthermore, the content of the principle of integration is not fixed and unique to all States but rather it depends on the context and circumstances in which it operates. This article also argues that the principle of integration of the economic, social and environmental factors of sustainable development can today be considered a norm of General International Law that is binding on all States and that the challenge is to find a way to make it operative.

1. INTRODUCCIÓN.—2. LAS DIMENSIONES DEL PRINCIPIO DE INTEGRACIÓN.— 2.1. La integración sistémica.—2.2. La integración institucional.—2.3. La integración jurídica.—2.3.1. La integración normativa.—2.3.2. La integración como una herramienta del razonamiento judicial.—3. EL ESTATUTO JURÍDICO DEL PRINCIPIO DE INTEGRACIÓN.—3.1. El principio de integración en los tratados internacionales multilaterales.—3.2. El principio de integración en la jurisprudencia internacional.—3.2.1. La jurisprudencia de la Corte Internacional de Justicia.—3.2.2. La jurisprudencia arbitral.—3.2.3. La jurisprudencia comunitaria.—3.3. El principio de integración como una norma consuetudinaria.—3.3.1. La opinio iuris sive necessitatis.—3.3.2. La práctica.— 3.3.3. El reconocimiento jurisprudencial.—4. CONSIDERACIONES FINALES

economic development; environmental protection; general international law; internormative relations; principle of integration; relations between regimes; social development; sustainable development;

REDI Vol. LXIV 2 2012



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