Current Research

Achieving Legal Targets for the Plastic Crisis: Assessing Industry Norms and Expectations to Improve Legislative Outcomes

This research project is funded by SSHRC and seeks to address the anticipated challenges for regulatory approaches to shift and sustain new normative behaviours toward plastic within industry in the context of an international treaty on plastic  I am most interested in designing and implementing legislation and regulation that successfully shifts industry norms of behaviour.  This will not only be useful to regulators by reducing practical difficulties and costs of enforcement but may also be pivotal in determining the overall success of the proposed international treaty to combat the plastic crisis.

Aviation and Climate Change 

This research agenda considers the contribution that the aviation industry is making to climate change. While aviation is a growing industry, thus far there are no concrete plans to mitigate its emissions (especially at an international level).  I am most interested in investigating ways that law and policy can reduce emissions from aviation, and the impact on tourism and the economy.  I have published articles on this topic as it relates to tourism and the impacts on small island developing states and am currently working on an article  on how Canada’s federal government could move forward targeting domestic emissions from aviation.

Related Publications

  • Perryman, Michael,* Besco, Laurel, Suleiman, Carina* & Lucato, Lindsay.* Forthcoming. Ready for Take Off: Airline Engagement with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Journal of Air Transport Management. 

  • Besco, Laurel. (2021). Carbon Pricing Policies and Emissions from Aviation: Patterns of Convergence and Divergence. In Boyd, B. & Olive, A. (Eds.) Provincial Policy Laboratories: Policy Diffusion and Transfer in Canada's Federal System. University of Toronto Press. 

  • Chalifour, Nathalie & Besco, Laurel. (2017). Taking Flight: Federal Action to Mitigate Canada's GHG Emissions from Aviatoin. Ottawa Law Review, 48(2), 577-625.

  • Pentelow, Laurel & Scott, Daniel. (2011). Aviation’s inclusion in international climate policy regimes: Implications for the Caribbean tourism industry. Journal of Air Transport Management, 17(3), 199-205.

  • Pentelow, Laurel & Scott, Daniel. (2010). The Implications of Climate Change Mitigation Policy and Oil Price Volatility for Tourism Arrivals to the Caribbean. Tourism and Hospitality Planning & Development, 7(3). 301-315.

Other Selected Publications (* indicates student)

  • Mackie, Colin & Besco, Laurel (2020). The Idea of Prospective Responsibility for End-of-Life Obligations. Environmental Law Reporter, News and Analysis, 50(7), 10573-10603.

  • Hughes, Sara, Yordi, Samer* & Besco, Laurel. (2018). The Role of Pilot Projects In Urban Climate Change Policy Innovation. Policy Studies Journal, doi: 10.1111/psj.12288.

  • Besco, Laurel. (2018). Responses to the Clean Power Plan: Factors Influencing State Decision-Making. Review of Policy Research, 35(5), 670-690.

  • Besco, Laurel. (2018). Judicial Education for Sustainability. McGill Journal of Sustainable Development Law, 14(1), 1-28. 

  • Besco, Laurel. (2014). Green productivity: clarifying terminology and concepts. International Journal of Sustainable Economy, 6(4), 406-425.