Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Climate Change and Human Rights

The International Council on Human Rights reports:

Policies on climate change have so far ignored its likely human rights impacts, according to our new report, Climate Change and Human Rights: A Rough Guide, published on 24 June. The report argues that human rights principles can guide climate change policy by focusing on individual suffering and exposure to risk. To date, little systematic research has examined the human rights dimensions of climate change, yet almost every human right is threatened. Climate change will create new health risks, threaten food and water supplies, destroy land and livelihoods, and lead to forced migration and conflict. Global warming will disproportionately affect countries already lacking the resources to meet basic human rights obligations.

Human rights principles can help mobilise and direct adaptation funding, the report finds. They provide criteria for evaluating mitigation and technology transfer policies. The report also examines decision-making processes and accountability, the merits of litigation, and a range of ethical and policy dilemmas that climate change generates.

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