Australian Centre for Climate and Environmental Law (ACCEL)

Law Tropical Forests and Carbon

The objectives of the Centre are to encourage, promote and support innovative and important scholarship including teaching, research, consultancy and public interest advocacy in all areas of environmental law and policy. These objectives are pursued within the University of Sydney, with other related Centres and institutions in Australia and overseas, with the legal profession, and with the wider community.


  • Distinguished Speaker Series: Climate Disaster Law: What is Australia's Scorecard? - 26 November 2015. Presented by Professor Rosemary Lyster, Sydney Law School
  • ACCEL 2015 Distinguished Speaker address 12 November 2015: Howard Kunreuther, James G. Dinan Professor; Professor of Decision Sciences and Business and Public Policy at the Wharton School, and co-director of the Wharton Risk Management and Decision Processes Center.
    Who Should Compensate the Victims of Climate Disasters?: The Role of Insurance
    This talk characterizes the challenges that consumers, insurers and the government face in dealing with insurance for low-probability high-consequence events. Given their limited experience with catastrophes, there is a tendency for all three stakeholders to engage in short-term intuitive thinking rather than long-term deliberative thinking when making insurance-related decisions. Public-private partnerships can encourage investment in protective measures prior to a disaster, deal with affordability problems and provide coverage for catastrophic risks. Insurance premiums based on risk provide signals to residents and business as to the hazards they face and enable insurers to lower premiums for properties where steps have been taken to reduce their risk. The talk will also discuss the role that insurance can play in addressing the climate change problem and propose a public-private partnership for dealing with the flood risk that could be applied to other extreme events in Australia and the United States. Event flyer | Registration
ACCEL are pleased to announce two new publications:
  • Rothwell, D., Oude Elferink, A., Scott, K., Stephens, T. (2015). The Oxford Handbook of the Law of the Sea. United Kingdom.
    Oxford University Press: The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea comprehensively defined the parameters of the law of the sea in 1982, and since the Convention was concluded it has seen considerable development. This Oxford Handbook provides a comprehensive and original analysis of its current debates and controversies, both theoretical and practical. Written by expert and interdisciplinary contributors, the Handbook sets out how the law of the sea has developed, and the challenges it is currently facing.
  • Saul, B., Stephens, T. (2015). Antarctica in International Law. United Kingdom: Hart Publishing.
    This book brings together the main primary international materials concerning the regulation and governance of Antarctica, including multilateral and bilateral treaties, United Nations materials, 'soft laws', and judicial decisions. It covers the spectrum of Antarctic issues from environmental protection to scientific cooperation to tourism. As it shows, Antarctic law has constantly adapted to meet new challenges and is a sophisticated, inclusive, dynamic and responsive regime.

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