A more fragmented international climate change practice has already led to tangible trade disputes.

The clash between trade and climate-related measures is inevitable. Indeed, such clash is already occurring in the international sphere through the multilateral trade system. Obviously, countries have different priorities. Some of them favor free trade in the current globalized and interdependent world in contrast to more developed and environmentally aware states that are seeking to preserve the environment and fight global warming. These countries are also joined by other states as the Small Developing Island States (SDIS) that are facing imminent danger like rising sea levels, threats to water and food security which might lead to climate change refugees and so on. In this context, one would wonder whether trade or climate protection should take primacy in the international scene and what kind of incentives could be offered to countries in order to favor climate change measures even when these measures might hinder trade but benefit the overall well-being of the society in the short or long term. What could possibly convince developing and Least Developing Countries (LDCs) to adopt climate change measures and stop the unsustainable economic activities that are further contributing to global warming? Is it even possible to convince these countries to adopt such approach given the historical pollution committed by the developed states in the north in the last century? In the chapter “Soft, Complex, and Fragmented International Climate Change Practice: What Implications for International Trade Law,” the authors Francesco Sindico and Julie Gibson attempted to provide an answer to this question. In this sense, the authors emphasized on many factors that could play a role in shaping the potential future geopolitical climate in the international sphere concerning this topic. Thus, one can say that depending on the kind of measures that could be adopted, countries might embrace a stricter or more open approaches when it comes to this topic. In other words, if the future climate change agreements adopted softer commitments, then countries might refrain from adopting measures such as border adjustment measures in contrast to the latter case where the Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) adopt hard measures that would impact the economic growth of these states. Thus, the political compromise must be kept intact in order to avoid the occurrence of such situations. One could already question whether the Paris agreement adopts hard or soft commitments and what is the impact of these commitments on the United States withdrawal from the agreement in the recent months? Setting that aside, and as it was stated before there are already several trade conflicts brought before the World Trade Organization (WTO) which reflect the current existing clash between international trade measures and domestic climate change regulations. In particular, the current cases are concerned with domestic regulations adopted in relation to the renewable energy industry such as solar or wind energies. As such, the Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) of the WTO had to examine whether these measures violated international trade rules. And indeed, the panels and Appellate Body (AB) have found plenty of these measures in contradiction with international trade rules.