On 11 October we joined over 160 civil society and indigenous organisations, and academics from across 53 nations in signing an open letter calling on world leaders to put human rights at the centre of environmental policy.
As the letter notes,
“Just this month the Human Rights Council adopted a resolution recognising the Right to a Healthy Environment. And while there is evidence that the protection of human rights can lead to better environmental outcomes, calls for recognition of the holistic and indivisible nature of human rights and the environment often go unheard and unactioned in global, regional and national environmental and climate policy forums.”
We recently evidenced to the UK Cabinet Office that the two highest climate risk factors to the UK (flooding and overheating) fall disproportionately on those at a socio-economic disadvantage.
In advance of the latest round of global climate talks which begin at the end of the month in Glasgow (COP26) global leaders must remember that the climate emergency is a human rights issue and must be treated as such at all levels of decision making including locally, nationally and globally.