Dec 05, 2014
From Scientific America, published on Monday, 1 December 2014.
For all the flack the U.N. climate talks have taken over the past 20 years, one major achievement will be on display as the next round of negotiations open in Peru today.
Climate change has been inextricably linked to social justice.
The key questions that face the delegates as they meet in Lima are no longer simply about carbon emissions targets and timetables, but also about people and human rights.
One mark of that shift is the $9.6 billion committed so far by rich nations to the U.N.’s Green Climate Fund to help poor countries.
But it’s not just about money.
- Nations will consider a pledge not only to “respect, ” but also to “protect, promote, and fulfill” human rights – and to integrate those protections into all climate action.
- On deforestation – a huge issue in host country Peru – negotiators are being asked for stronger safeguards to protect human and indigenous rights, traditional knowledge and biodiversity.
- The financing by rich companies of clean energy projects in poor countries faces a reform effort to protect human rights. Exhibit A: Hydroelectric projects in Panama and elsewhere that are displacing native residents have been stalled by protest.
The social justice movement has come to such a head that some activists are calling the Lima talks “the Human Rights COP,” or Conference of the Parties, said Alyssa Johl, senior attorney at the Center for International Environmental Law.
“Human rights is at the core of what is being negotiated and decided here,” Johl said.
Read the full article here.
Dec 11, 2017 by CHRD
[This article was originally published online in July in Fundación Ambiente y Recursos Naturales’ 2017 Environmental Report. It is being reposted here in honor of Human Rights Day] Credit: Kinoram Across Latin America and the world, governments and investors are pushing for a dra
Oct 30, 2017 by CHRD
Overlooking the first AngloGold Ashanti mine in the Siguiri region of Guinea. Approximately 380 households were forcibly evicted from their ancestral land to make way for the open-pit oxide goldmine. (Photo: Inclusive Development International) A UN report released last week (Oct. 25) highli
Sep 27, 2017 by CHRD
On September 26, 2017, the Coalition for Human Rights in Development co-hosted a ‘Demystifying Development Banks’ webinar with a special focus on Asia, where many countries have been shown to be among the most dangerous for human rights and environmental defenders who confront infrastru
According to Caio Borges, Prof. Karin Costa Vazquez and Supriya Roychoudhury, if question marks on the future of BRICS are repeatedly raised, the New Development Bank (NDB) is probably the most concrete avenue through which the grouping can deepen co-operation. The NDB’s stated commitment to
Two of the primary backers of the Agua Zarca hydropower dam project in Honduras have officially announced their exit from the project following years of campaigning by local indigenous groups and criticism from international civil society organizations. In a press release issued on July 6, the D
Jul 07, 2017 by CHRD
Coalition Coordinator, Gretchen Gordon, recently participated in a webinar hosted by the CIVICUS World Alliance for the launch of their report, ‘State of Civil Society 2017.’ Gordon’s presentation, based on her guest essay accompanying the report, focused on how the private sector is pl
Jun 29, 2017 by members
(Photo: Human Rights Watch) The World Bank is providing cover for a government system of child labor and forced labor in Uzbekistan, according to a new report by Human Rights Watch and the Uzbek-German Forum for Human Rights. The report, “‘We Can’t Refuse to Pick Cotton’: Forced and Ch
Mar 08, 2017 by CHRD
Read the full report: English | Spanish | French Partnering with Communities to Defend Human Rights In 2016 the Coalition engaged in partnerships with communities around the world to connect community struggles with strategic resources and campaign support and to bring community expe
Feb 14, 2017 by CHRD
This week 32 organizations called on the World Bank Board of Directors to urge them to ensure that the Bank takes all measures necessary to remedy harm caused to four Maasai villages displaced to make way for the Olkaria IV geothermal project in Kenya. The Kenya Electricity Expansion Project (KEEP)
Dec 08, 2016 by CHRD
Global groups call for action to protect human rights in development Ahead of Human Rights Day, December 10th, the Coalition for Human Rights in Development joins with over 50 civil society groups around the world to call on financial institutions, governments and businesses to stand up for human
Dec 02, 2016 by members
This month, 18 human rights and environmental organizations called on the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), the United States’ development finance institution, to strengthen its human rights due diligence. OPIC is presently revising its social and environmental polic
Nov 16, 2016 by CHRD
The Coalition for Human Rights in Development this week called on the Dutch Development Bank FMO to strengthen its commitment to human rights and to enact strong due diligence requirements to ensure that human rights are respected within FMO-financed activities. FMO is presently revising its Su
Aug 23, 2016 by members
In a recent blog titled “World Bank Covers Up Human Rights Abuses in Nepal: Silencing Community Voices“, the Lawyers’ Association for Human Rights of Nepalese Indigenous Peoples (LAHURNIP) together with Coalition member Accountability Counsel calls out the World Bank for igno
In an opinion piece in Foreign Policy magazine, Maina Kiai, UN Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association, explains how the goal of sustainable development is under threat from growing restrictions on public participation in development and closing ci
Jul 21, 2016 by members
Environmental activists and civil society groups in Macedonia working to defend their rights in the face of harmful development projects financed by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and other development banks, are increasingly threatened and harassed. In an art
Jul 12, 2016 by members
Coalition member Human Rights Watch reports that three human rights defenders have lodged a formal complaint against the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) regarding forced labor in the Uzbek cotton industry. The complaint demands an investigation of forced labor
The New York Times editorial board today called on the World Bank to “champion human rights” through its new safeguards policy framework presently under consideration by the Bank’s board of directors. The Times cited that despite the fact that the institution’s own re
On June 16th, the Palestinian human rights organization, Al-Haq, urged the World Bank to explicitly address the need for human rights safeguards for investments in conflict-affected areas during the Bank’s ongoing safeguard policy reform process. The Bank has announced plans to increase in
Jun 02, 2016 by members
Coalition member ESCR-Net is calling on leaders of OAS member states to address the financial crisis currently hindering the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights’ ability to operate as a key regional human rights mechanism. The crisis has already caused the IACHR to suspend its 159th and
Honduran social movements and indigenous peoples organizations this week called on the World Bank to in light of persistent attacks on human rights defenders, suspend financing in Honduras “until there are minimally just and realistic conditions for indigenous and small f
May 26, 2016 by members
African civil society groups, including Coalition member Lumière Synergie pour le Développement, called on the African Development Bank this week to increase its accountability and engagement with civil society and to embrace pro-poor investment strategies that support public sector ser
May 20, 2016 – The UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and other top UN indigenous peoples experts sent a letter Friday to World Bank President Jim Kim and the Bank’s executive directors, challenging a proposal that would weaken protections for ind
May 11, 2016 by members
Coalition member Forest Peoples Programme has released a report on the impacts of deforestation and forest degradation on indigenous and local communities in the DRC, highlighting the human rights violations and socio-environmental impacts often caused by these activities. The report also c
May 04, 2016 by members
Peter Bosshard, interim ED of Coalition member International Rivers, explains how indigenous communities are particularly at risk of landgrabbing and face increasing repression, even death when standing up for their rights. Read the article here.
NDB project funding has been the subject of intrigue and concern among civil society organizations (CSOs) since the bank’s formal launch in Fortaleza, Brazil, in 2014. Yet news of these first ‘green’ loans has done little to ease their fears. The problem, CSOs say, is that since the NDB still
Apr 12, 2016 by members
As government ministers from Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa gather in Washington, DC for the third board of governors meeting of the BRICS New Development Bank (NDB) April 13 and 14, civil society groups in BRICS countries appealed to their governments and NDB management to operate
Apr 05, 2016 by CHRD
While the World Bank’s motto is to “End Poverty” and promote sustainable development, too often Bank investments disregard the human rights and priorities of poor communities, leaving them worse off. As the World Bank prepares to host finance ministers from across the globe
In a victory for indigenous and human rights activists, the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (BCIE) announced Friday the suspension of its financing of the Agua Zarca Dam. The Honduras dam project has been a focal point for international attention following the kil
Mar 30, 2016 by CHRD
In the face of rapidly shrinking civil society space and growing attacks on human rights and environmental defenders, sign this statement (English, French, Spanish, Arabic) on the Responsibility of International Financial Institutions to Ensure Meaningful and Effective Participation an
With the BRICS New Development Bank set to open its regional office in Johannesburg and approve its first set of projects for financing in the next weeks, South African civil society groups raise concerns about lack of transparency or consultation with potentially affected communities. The NDB h
Mar 16, 2016 by CHRD
The Coalition for Human Rights in Development submitted recommendations today urging the World Bank to amend its proposed Environmental and Social Framework to meaningfully address human rights. The submission addresses arguments that have been put forward against embracing human rights an
United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, Michel Forst, called upon the Government of Honduras today to “ensure the safety and protection of Gustavo Castro Soto”, a Mexican human rights defender, and to facilitate his return to Mexico as soon as possible.
Mar 09, 2016 by CHRD
Follow this action alert to tell FMO, Finnfund, CABEI, Voith and Siemens to immediately pull out of the Agua Zarca Dam and to not get involved in any other projects on the land of the indigenous Lenca people. intlrv.rs/StopAguaZarca.
Mar 05, 2016 by CHRD
The Coalition for Human Rights in Development expresses our deep sadness and outrage at the assassination this week of indigenous leader and environmental activist Berta Cáceres. Berta was the coordinator and co-founder of the Council of Indigenous Peoples of Honduras, COPINH. She fought t
The World Bank consultation on proposed new social and environmental new safeguards will end one month from today. The Bretton Woods Observer reports how civil society organizations around the world have been calling on the Bank to adopt a strong framework for the protection of human rig
Feb 02, 2016 by CHRD
Yesterday, the U.S. Congress passed the Electrify Africa Act, promoting investment in access to electricity in sub-Saharan Africa. The Electrify Africa Act in part formalizes Power Africa – a U.S.- led initiative to work with African governments, the World Bank, African Development B
Jan 29, 2016 by members
Amnesty International argues that the recently launched Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), led by China, should draw on the experience of other development banks and implement strong human rights standards. The group raises concerns that the Bank’s development of an Env
Jan 28, 2016 by members
January 28, 2016 – African civil society organizations called on African governments and public and private financiers today to find socially and environmentally sustainable solutions to Africa’s energy needs. The statement, signed by groups from 10 countries, was issued to coi
Dec 17, 2015 by members
December 17, 2015 – Nigerian civil society organizations met in Abuja, FCT, Nigeria as the World Bank consults with the Nigerian government regarding a large-scale revision of the Bank’s social and environmental safeguard policies. The groups called on the Bank to adopt strong req
Oct 13, 2015 by CHRD
The World Bank doesn’t require that its projects respect human rights, and has thus far refused to adopt such a requirement. Máxima Acuña de Chaupe and Elmer Campos travelled far from their families in rural Peru to attend the Annual Meeting of the World Bank, taking place in the capital city of L
In a report to the UN General Assembly, United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, characterizes the World Bank as a “human rights-free zone” and criticizes the institution’s current approach to human rights as “incohe
In 1999 residents of Hade, Kosovo were forced from their homes by Serbian commandos.They were able to return some time later and have been working tirelessly since then to rebuild their village and return to normal life. Now, they are being threatened to leave again, but this time the threat is comin
UN Special Rapporteur finds that human rights are being entirely left out of the debate around extreme poverty and extreme inequality, even though the human rights framework is imperative in resolving these issues. The report criticizes the World Bank, IMF and UN for failing to follow up on any rec
A report by the UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of assembly and association discusses the importance of freedom of speech within natural resource extraction projects. Concludes the following: rights of freedom of peaceful assembly and association are essential to fair work on extraction of na
Apr 14, 2015 by CHRD
International Coalition Warns: World Bank Driving Hazardous Development WHAT: Demonstration – Civil society groups encircle the World Bank in “Caution” tape, demanding strong human rights safeguards WHEN: Friday April 17,
Dr. Jim Yong Kim, President, World Bank January 30, 2015 Dear Mr. President, We are the Requesters, Anuak refugees and asylum seekers based in Kenya (Dadaab, Kakuma and Nairobi) and South Sudan (Gorom), who submitted a complaint to the World Bank Inspection Panel in September 2012. We have written
28 UN Experts sent a letter to World Bank President Jim Kim, to express their concerns regarding the Bank’s proposed new social and environmental safeguards. The letter criticizes the Bank for avoiding meaningful incorporation of human rights protections. Read the letter here.
In a recent speech at the World Bank, entitled “Rethinking the World Bank’s Approach to Human Rights,” Philip Alston, UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, described how the World Bank “stands almost alone…in insisting that human rights are mer
Oct 16, 2014 by CHRD
From October 10–12, 2014 the World Bank and International Monetary Fund held their joint Annual Meetings in Washington, D.C. Scores of activists, community leaders and civil society organisations from across the world participated in meetings, panels and actions to affirm the importance of
From the Guardian, published on Monday 29 September 2014 09.36 EDT. World Bank accuses itself of failing to protect Kenya forest dwellers Leaked document says World Bank violated its own safeguards in dealings with Sengwer people evicted from their lands A leaked copy of a World Bank investigatio