The 1972 Stockholm Declaration at 50:
Reflecting on a Half-Century of
International Environmental Law

A symposium in celebration of the publication of the fiftieth volume of the Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law

Friday, October 8th, 2021  |  9:00 AM - 3:25 PM EST

University of Georgia School of Law

The 1972 United Nations Conference on the Human Environment produced the “Stockholm Declaration,” an environmental manifesto that forcefully declared a human right to environmental health and birthed the field of modern international environmental law. In celebration of its 50th anniversary volume, the Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law is convening a symposium to reflect on the first 50 years of international environmental law and the lessons this history may hold for the future. The symposium is organized according to the three themes of Principle 1 of the Stockholm Declaration, as follows:


All sessions take place remotely via Zoom. Students and a limited number of registrants may attend in person.

Welcome Addresses | 9:00-9:15 AM

Peter "Bo" Rutledge | Dean & Herman E. Talmadge Chair of Law

MJ Durkee | Associate Dean for International Programs, Director, Dean Rusk International Law Center, and Allen Post Professor

Eva Hunnius Ohlin | Senior Advisor for Energy and Environment, Embassy of Sweden

Panel 1: The Rights-Based Approach to Environmental Protection | 9:10 AM

“[Humankind] has the fundamental right to freedom, equality and adequate conditions of life, in an environment of a quality that permits a life of dignity and well-being.

  • How and in what contexts is the Stockholm Declaration’s rights-based approach to environmental protection useful, and what are limitations of this approach?

Nnimmo Bassey | Director, Health of Mother Earth Foundation
Tyler Giannini | Director, Human Rights Program, Director, International Human Rights Clinic, Clinical Professor, Harvard Law
Kate Mackintosh | Executive Director, Promise Institute for Human Rights, UCLA Law
Katie O'Bryan | Lecturer, Monash University
Moderator | Diane Marie Amann | Regents' Professor of International Law, Emily & Ernest Woodruff Chair in International Law, Faculty Co-Director of the Dean Rusk International Law Center

Panel 1 Breakout Session | 10:25 AM

Break | 10:40 AM

Panel 2: Anti-Racism, Decolonization, and Environmental Protection | 10:50 AM

“In this respect, policies promoting or perpetuating apartheid, racial segregation, discrimination, colonial and other forms of oppression and foreign domination stand condemned and must be eliminated.”

  • How does international environmental law address or fail to address environmental racism?

Sumudu Anopama Atapattu | Director of Research Centers and Senior Lecturer, University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Law
Robin Bronen | Executive Director – Alaska Institute for Justice
Sarah Riley Case | Boulton Junior Fellow, McGill University Faculty of Law
Usha Natarajan | Edward W. Said Fellow at Columbia University
Moderator | Harlan G. Cohen | Gabriel M. Wilner/UGA Foundation Professor in International Law & Faculty Co-Director of the Dean Rusk International Law Center

Panel 2 Breakout Session | 12:05 PM

Lunch Break | 12:20 PM - 1:00 PM

Panel 3: International Environmental Law’s Future | 1:00 PM

“[Humankind] bears a solemn responsibility to protect and improve the environment for present and future generations.”

  • What are the successes and failures of the last 50 years of environmental law? What are the key international environmental law challenges for the next 50 years?

Rebecca M. Bratspies | Director, Center for Urban Environmental Reform and Professor, CUNY
Jutta Brunnée | Dean, University Professor & James Marshall Tory Dean’s Chair University of Toronto Faculty of Law
Lakshman D. Guruswamy | Nicholas Doman Professor of International Environmental Law, University of Colorado at Boulder Law School
Cymie Payne | Department of Human Ecology and School of Law, Rutgers University 
Moderator | MJ Durkee | Associate Dean for International Programs, Director of the Dean Rusk International Law Center & Allen Post Professor

Panel 3 Breakout Session | 2:15 PM

Break | 2:30 PM

Keynote Introduction | 2:40 PM

Adam D. Orford | Assistant Professor, University of Georgia School of Law

Keynote Address | 2:45 PM

"Stockholm Plus 50: Glass Half Full, Half Empty, or Shattered?"

Dinah L. Shelton | Manatt/Ahn Professor of International Law Emeritus, George Washington University School of Law

Closing Remarks | 3:15 PM

Kimberlee Styple | Editor, Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law


View the Full Symposium Program


Sponsored by:

Dean Rusk International Law Center, University of Georgia School of Law

Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law

American Society of International Law

The Promise Institute for Human Rights, UCLA School of Law


University of Georgia Co-Sponsors include:

International Law Society

Environmental Law Association

Georgia Initiative for Climate & Society

Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources

School of Public and International Affairs

Center for International Trade and Security

Global Health Institute, College of Public Health 

School of Social Work

College of Environment and Design


The University of Georgia School of Law is committed to providing reasonable access and accommodations for people with disabilities upon request.  For questions about accessibility or to request accommodations, contact Casey Graham at or 706-542-5167 at least three business days prior to the event.