How to Protect Future Generations' Rights in European Governance

Intergenerational Justice Review 5 (1) (2010)
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Given that future generations are right-bearing citizens of tomorrow; legislative systems should secure these rights through appropriate institutions. In the case of the European Union; reference to intergenerational justice can be found in various fundamental legal texts; but; paradoxically; no institutions exist to defend it. The structural short-termism inscribed into representative democracies means that present interests easily trump future concerns. We argue that the best way to overcome this problem is a system of temporal checks and balances. By comparing a selection of existing instruments with regards to their impact on the legislative process; we propose the creation of a European Guardian for Future Generations as the most effective measure to protect the rights of future generations and provide an overview of recent developments in this direction.



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Reasons and Persons.Derek Parfit - 1984 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press.
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Obligations to posterity.Thomas Schwartz - 1978 - In Richard I. Sikora & Brian M. Barry (eds.), Obligations to Future Generations. White Horse Press. pp. 3--3.

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