14 October 2021 - NPWJ News Digest on Environmental Justice & Human Rights

NPWJ press release

NPWJ welcomes the UN Human Rights Council’s recognition of the human right to a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment
No Peace Without Justice, 08 Oct 2021

On 9 March 2021, the governments of Costa Rica, Maldives, Morocco, Slovenia, and Switzerland delivered a joint statement at the Human Rights Council inviting governments to support the call for the recognition of the right to a healthy environment. Resolution 48/13 was approved on Friday 8 October 2021 during the 48th session of the Human Rights Council with 43 votes in favour, four abstentions and zero against. On the same occasion, the Human Rights Council also passed a second resolution (48/14) that establishes a Special Rapporteur on the human rights impact of climate change.

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EU to seek ban on oil and gas exploration in the Arctic
Reuters, 13 Oct 2021

The European Union will seek a ban on tapping new oil, coal, and gas deposits in the Arctic to protect a region severely affected by climate change, according to a proposal for the bloc's new Arctic strategy published on Wednesday.The European Commission proposal reflects the EU's efforts to boost its role on the global stage, though it has limited influence in the Arctic. It is not a member of the Arctic Council, the regional coordinating body, though three of its member states - Denmark, Finland and Sweden - are.

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UN Rights Bodies Take Strong Stance on Climate Crisis
Human Rights Watch, 12 Oct 2021

Less than three weeks ahead of the global COP 26 climate summit in Glasgow, two key United Nations human rights bodies in Geneva have taken action to strengthen the human rights framework around the climate crisis. The decisions are a clear signal that unless governments take more ambitious climate action necessary to protect human rights from the increasingly catastrophic toll the crisis is having around the globe, there is now a higher chance they will be held accountable for their inaction.

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At least 85 percent of the world’s population has been affected by human-induced climate change, new study shows
The Washington Post, 11 Oct 2021

At least 85 percent of the global population has experienced weather events made worse by climate change, according to research published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change. After using machine learning to analyze and map more than 100,000 studies of events that could be linked to global warming, researchers paired the analysis with a well-established data set of temperature and precipitation shifts caused by fossil fuel use and other sources of carbon emissions.


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Paper giants’ expansion plans raise fears of greater deforestation in Indonesia
Mongabay, 11 Oct 2021

Activists are warning of “severe environmental and social risks” from plans by two of the world’s largest paper companies to significantly expand their operations in Indonesia. There could be even more forest clearing and fires — and the thick, choking haze that results — if the companies expand their pulpwood plantation footprints, says Sergio Baffoni, senior campaign coordinator at the Environmental Paper Network (EPN).

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UN chief calls for bold action to end “suicidal war with nature”
UN News, 11 Oct 2021

“We are losing our suicidal war against nature,” he said in a video message to the meeting, which is mainly being held virtually. The UN chief warned that “humanity’s reckless interference with nature” will have permanent consequences.

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Rotting Red Sea oil tanker could leave 8m people without water
The Guardian, 11 Oct 2021

The impact of an oil spill in the Red Sea from a tanker that is rotting in the water could be far wider than anticipated, with 8 million people losing access to running water and Yemen’s Red Sea fishing stock destroyed within three weeks. Negotiations are under way to offload the estimated 1.1m barrels of crude oil that remains onboard the FSO Safer, which has been deteriorating by the month since it was abandoned in 2017.

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Facebook to block illegal sales of protected Amazon rainforest lands
Mongabay, 08 Oct 2021

On Friday, embattled social media giant Facebook announced it would crack down on the illegal sales of protected Amazon rainforest land via its platform, according to a blog post by the company. The move comes after a BBC investigation found that the company’s Marketplace product was being used to broker sales of protected lands, including Indigenous territories and national forest reserves.

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