Print version ISSN 0102-8529
QUEIROZ, Fábio Albergaria de. Environment and international trade: Sustainable relationship or irreconcilable opposites? Environmental and pro-commerce arguments of the debate. Contexto int. [online]. 2009, vol.31, n.2, pp. 251-283. ISSN 0102-8529. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-85292009000200002.
The complex relationship between the process of trade liberalization and the environment is, nowadays, one of the most important issues found at the international affairs agenda. Much has been discussed, but few conclusive answers on the so-called environmental impact by free trade have been drawn. This paper has beseeched establishing a direct relationship between the increase of both the commercial activity as a result of economic liberalization and the environmental degradation levels. This research has led to the core conclusion that environmental effects of trade liberalization are ambiguous, having shown the impossibility of asserting, as a general rule, the existence of a direct relation between free trade and environmental degradation. We have also concluded that an accurate analysis on the issue will depend on the individual study of each case due to its complexity and subjectivity.
Keywords : Environment; Free Trade; Environmental Law; Sustainable Development.