This contribution deals with harmful effects on the environment arising from peacetime military activities, namely training of military personnel and testing of weapons and/or other military equipment. By carrying out, within their own domestic environment, in areas beyond the limits of national jurisdiction or even within the environment of other states, various kinds of hazardous military exercises, States may cause serious or irreversible environmental damages and often affect the health and lives of human beings. This subject-matter is addressed both in light of international environmental law and international human rights law. Among all possible sources of environmental harm and pollution, such peacetime military activities raise very special legal issues, which might not be addressed in the same way as any other state’s hazardous activities. Special emphasis is given to the fact that such ‘War Games’ are actually played by States within their jurisdiction or control. In light of this, the legal consequences for States are explored, particularly the issue of the existence in contemporary International Law of a customary state’s duty of care for its own environment, in addition to its duty to prevent transboundary environmental harm.
The protection of the environment against harmful effects of peacetime military training activities: the role of international law / Odoni, Mario. - Leiden Studies on the Frontiers of International Law - Volume 3:(2016), pp. 262-278.