Professor Sindico and Gibson, on how we should look at international climate change regime and on the relationship between climate and trade.

Professors F. Sindico and J. Gibson – in their study in the part of the book about China’s role on “Non-Trade Concerns dedicated to the complex interplay between sustainable development, trade law, globalization and climate change – tackle the particular nature and current characteristics of “international climate change legal regime”, as a crucial part of today’s international law, as developed through international Conventions on climate change. Indeed, as the Authors point out, the actual international law legal framework is something completely new for jurists and political scholars, and its study as well its assessment requires new tools and even a new set of mind. We cannot comprehend how the real supranational structures actually work if we not carefully examine the novelties -here, from a legal perspective- and the “new vocaboulary”. In particular, the Authors consider and critically evaluate those key features that are the most representative of that regime and under-researched in the academia, too: - Softness (i.e. the dynamics between hard law and soft law). What is the difference between setting binding goals and standards? Which of the two ways is more efficient/effective in promoting new frameworks? All this point is particularly important in evaluating the effects and implementations of the Paris Agreement; - The fragmentation, understood as the situation in which cases alike are not decided/governed alike. - The complexity, used in this analysis as a tool to look at the context of emission trading. Another part of the study is dedicated to understand the constant tension between climate and trade, as two deeply conflicting elements in the current international legal regime. They examine this tension by underlying and emphasizing both the historical developments and current trajectories. The questions tackled here are: how their interaction has changed over time? What is the current equilibrium between the two? Those questions are analyzed through concrete cases, which gives concreteness to the analysis. In conclusion, this cutting edge study shows how we should adapt our legal categories to the present changes and new situations, and how we can also understand complex phenomena through clarity.