Columbia International Affairs Online: Policy Briefs

CIAO DATE: 09/2011

Environmental concerns in international investment agreements: The "new era" has commenced, but harmonization remains far off

Kathryn Gordon, Joachim Pohl

August 2011

Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment


In Columbia FDI Perspective No.37, Daniel M. Firger foretells “a new era characterized by profound harmonization” between climate change policy and international investment law, based on what he sees as “unmistakable signs of convergence” in recent investment treaty making. A study just released by the OECD suggests that convergence of investment treaty making toward environmental policy began about a decade ago, but also that “profound harmonization” of investment and climate change policy is still some time away.