4 March 2016: Virtually all of the proposed methods of implementing human rights norms related to the environment will also support achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, John Knox, reflects in a new document, titled ‘Report of the Special Rapporteur on the issue of human rights obligations relating to the enjoyment of a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment.’
The Human Rights Council (HRC) requested the Special Rapporteur to study human rights obligations with respect to the environment and to identify good practices in the use of such obligations in its resolution 28/11. The HRC also asked the Special Rapporteur to identify obstacles to the full realization of such rights as well as obligations to promote their realization. In response, the Special Rapporteur held an expert seminar and a public consultation and produced an Implementation Report (A/HRC/31/53), which proposes methods for implementing human rights obligations with respect to the enjoyment of a healthy environment, emphasizing their complementary.
A human rights perspective on environmental protection promotes equality, freedom and human dignity and improves the effectiveness of policy making, the Special Rapporteur emphasizes in his report. Knox elaborates that more sustainable and robust policy outcomes can be generated when those individuals most affected by development and environmental policies participate in decision-making processes. Read more