Can the great lakes of north america survive globalization?

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



Department of Social Sciences


The Great Lakes of North America – indeed, the whole of the Canada-United States (US) border – have long represented a textbook case of the peaceful resolution of disputes between nations. The Boundary Waters Treaty covers all waters that flow between the two countries and is thus certainly not limited to the Great Lakes. In the Great Lakes, the International Joint Commission has encouraged cooperation by local, state, provincial and federal agencies. The incoherence between environmental and trade law in many ways is predicated on the uncertain understanding of the relationship between ecosystem science and economy. Due to the uncertain interface between international environmental and trade law, it may be best for the governments of the US and Canada to use a version of the precautionary principle in their relationship through an increased reliance on ecosystem-based policy to manage shared water resources.

Publisher's Statement

© 2006 philippe le prestre and peter stoett. Publisher’s version of record: https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315261546-8

Publication Title

Bilateral Ecopolitics: Continuity and Change in Canadian-American Environmental Relations