Event information

14 September 2022, 19:00-20:30

Downloads

Programme >

Promoting and Protecting the Right to a Clean, Healthy and Sustainable Environment

Event

The remainings of an iceberg The remainings of an iceberg

Global challenges such as climate change, food insecurity, forced migration, and armed conflicts, as well as difficult access to water, land and other natural resources, raw materials and energy, have increased and have a major impact on stability and security in the world. Violations of human rights, especially in the context of environmental protection, are increasingly driving conflict.

At its 48th session in October 2021, the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council (HRC) recognized for the first time the human right of all to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment, calling on states to work together, and with other partners, to implement this newly recognized right. It also invited the UN General Assembly (UNGA) to consider the matter. At its 76th session in July 2022, the UNGA responded to this call and recognized the human right of all to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment.

In parallel, UN treaty bodies (TBs) and regional courts are increasingly acknowledging the environmental dimensions of human rights. These TBs and courts are developing jurisprudence on environmental harm inducing human rights violations and on the negative human rights implications of climate change, as well as harmful projects aimed at mitigating and adapting to climate change.

At this side event to the HRC 51st session, the Geneva Academy, the Permanent Missions of Costa Rica, the Maldives, Morocco, Switzerland and Slovenia to the UN in Geneva, Franciscans International, CIEL and EarthJustice invite States, NGOs, international organizations and human rights experts to discuss their role in promoting and protecting the right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment.

On this occasion, we will present our background paper Human Rights, the Environment, and the Right to a Healthy Environment, an output of our research project on the same issue and the basis of a future publication by the end of 2022.

Welcome

  • Erica Harper, Head of Research and Policy Studies, Geneva Academy

Moderation

  • Christophe Golay, Senior Research Fellow and Strategic Adviser on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, Geneva Academy

Introduction

  • Asim Ahmed, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Maldives to the UN in Geneva
  • Shara Duncan Villalobos, Ambassador, Deputy Permanent Representative and Chargée d'affaires a.i. of Costa Rica to the UN in Geneva

Panelists

  • David R. Boyd, UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment
  • Astrid Puentes Riaño, Independent expert consultant on human rights, environment and climate change
  • Megan Donald, Associate Research Fellow,  Geneva Academy
  • Olivier De Schutter, UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights

Conclusion

  • Anita Pipan, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Slovenia to the UN in Geneva
  • Omar Zniber, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Morocco to the UN in Geneva

Video

Promoting and Protecting the Right to a Clean, Healthy and Sustainable Environment

Watch this side event to the 51st session of the UN Human Rights Council which discussed the role of states, NGOs, international organizations and human rights experts in promoting and protecting the right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment.

MORE ON THIS THEMATIC AREA

Orphanage in Chiredzi, Zimbabwe. News

The Geneva Human Rights Platform Accompanied the Adoption of a UN Statement on Illegal Intercountry Adoptions

4 October 2022

Two UN treaty bodies, three UN Special Rapporteurs and the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances issued a Joint Statement on illegal intercountry adoptions.

Read more

A meeting of the Treaty Body members Platform at Villa Moynier News

The Treaty Body Members Platform in 2022

12 January 2023

In 2022, the TBMP hosted nine informal meetings for UN TBs, with the participation of UN TBs secretariat staff from OHCHR, along with UN Special Procedures mandate holders and their respective secretariat staff in order to support OHCHR ‘all-mechanism’ approach.

Read more

CSW63 Side Event - “Take the Hot Seat” Intergenerational Dialogue Event

Child Participation in the Work of UN Human Rights Mechanisms

6 February 2023, 13:15-14:45

This Human Rights Conversation will discuss child participation in the work of UN human rights mechanisms and opportunities to move away from today’s reliance on individual organizations or UN representatives’ initiatives.

Read more

Event

Mayors, Human Rights and the UN Universal Periodic Review

27 January 2023, 14:00-16:00

This hybrid event, co-organized by our Geneva Human Rights Platform, UPR-Info, OHCHR and UN-Habitat, and the Geneva Cities Hub will discuss human rights implementation at the local and the UPR.

Read more

Open dump Training

Protecting Human Rights and the Environment

September 2023

This training course will explore the major international and regional instruments for the promotion of human rights, as well as with their implementation and enforcement mechanisms; and provide practical insights into the different UN human rights mechanisms pertinent to advancing environmental issues and protecting environmental human rights defenders.

Read more

An aerial view of camps for internally displaced persons (IDPs), which have appeared following latest attacks by M23 rebels and other armed groups in the North Kivu region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Short Course

International Refugee Law

1 March - 18 April 2023

This online short course analyses the main international and regional norms governing the international protection of refugees. It notably examines the sources of international refugee law, including the 1951 Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, and their interaction with human rights law and international humanitarian law.

Read more

Project

Follow-up Review Pilot Series

Started in November 2021

Read more

Sign: National Human Rights Commission of Nepal Project

Local Implementation of Global Human Rights

Started in May 2020

The Geneva Human Rights Platform collaborates with a series of actors to reflect on the implementation of international human rights norms at the local level and propose solutions to improve uptake of recommendations and decisions taken by Geneva-based human rights bodies at the local level.

Read more

Cover of the publication Publication

Assessment Tool for Special Procedures' Impact Evaluation – Developing an Initial Framework

published on January 2023

Jonathan Andrew

Read more