Tag Archives: vulnerability

Human Rights Violations and Climate Change: The Last Days of the Inuit People? (S. Nuffer)

Author

Sarah Nuffer

Keywords

human rights violations, climate change, Inuit, Arctic, vulnerability, responsibility, future generations, United Nations, native groups, indigenous people

Excerpt

INTRODUCTION

The climate is changing. There is little debate left with regard to this statement. However, the world is still grappling with what exactly this change means. The Secretary General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, recently stated that he is “convinced that climate change, and what we do about it, will define us, our era, and ultimately the global legacy we leave for future generations.” 3 Global Climate Change (“GCC”) has the potential to affect the world’s most developed groups, however, the people whose lives will likely be changed most by GCC are those who have “contribute[d] the least to greenhouse emissions.” 4

One of the groups that will be most affected by GCC are the Inuit of the Arctic region. There is a large degree of certainty that the Arctic’s climate is changing and as a result the Inuit people are being forced to change their way of life, their cultural identity, and in some cases, they are being forced to leave their ancestral lands. While the Inuit people must pay the “highest price … [and] are directly threatened by these rapid climatic changes” 5 because of their traditional way of life, they contributed little to GCC. This unfortunate paradigm, that those most affected by GCC are not responsible for its creation, is a theme that runs tragically true for many native people that lead a traditional and near carbon-free life. This Note will explore the effects of GCC on the Inuit people …

Citation

(2010) 37 Rutgers Law Record 182.

Paper

Human Rights Violations and Climate Change: The Last Days of the Inuit People?

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International Legal Avenues to Address the Plight of Victims of Climate Change: Problems and Prospects (T. Koiturova)

Author(s)

Timo Koivurova

Keywords

climate change, international environmental law, vulnerability, ecology, climate regime

Abstract

This Article argues that the current structure of international law makes it unlikely that victims of climate change will find justice through international legal proceedings. Part I examines the various international legal proceedings that could provide recourse for victims of climate change. Part II focuses on the only case that has proceeded to the submission stage, the above-mentioned Inuit petition to the IACHR. Importantly, the Inuit’s human rights petition is currently the best possibility for success in international litigation since evidence already exists that climate change has caused clearly identifiable damage to the Arctic environment.22 The Article concludes by analyzing the likelihood of successfully combating climate change by utilizing the legal mechanisms discussed in Parts I and II.

Citation

(2007) 22 The Journal of Environmental Law and Litigation 267

Paper

International Legal Avenues to Address the Plight of Victims of Climate Change: Problems and Prospects

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Comment, When Islands Drown: The Plight of “Climate Change Refugees” and Recourse to International Human Rights Law (T. T. V. Duong)

Author(s)

Tiffany T.V. Duong

Keywords

climate change refugee, international human rights law, Tuvalu, vulnerability, reform, regime changes

Abstract

This comment explores the use of the existing refugee regime
to accommodate Tuvaluans and similarly placed “climate change
refugees” and then suggests international human rights law as an
effective catalyst to urge expansion of the refugee regime. Section
2 examines the basics of climate change as a scientific phenomenon
and explains why Tuvalu finds itself in its current plight. Section 3
surveys the current international refugee regime, with the curious
and potentially harmful distinction between a “refugee,” as
internationally defined, and a “climate change refugee,” as the
people of Tuvalu have been described. Section 4 argues for the use
of human rights law as a more effective vehicle than refugee law to
offer the island nation redress. It begins with an enumeration of
some of the universal human rights that Tuvaluans should enjoy
and which are being infringed by climate change. Section 5
advocates for expansion of the legal definition of a refugee based
on human rights claims to include climate change victims. Finally,
Section 6 concludes with a demand for future regime changes. The
human rights arena creates obligations that mandate international
actions to save Tuvaluans and future “climate change refugees.”

Citation

(2010) 31 University of Pennsylvania Journal of International Law 1239

Paper

Comment, When Islands Drown: The Plight of “Climate Change Refugees” and Recourse to International Human Rights Law

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Snow, Sand, Ice, and Sun: Climate Change and Equity in the Arctic and Small Island Developing States (J. Crump)

Author(s)

John Crump

Keywords

Arctic, SIDS, climate change, global greenhouse gas emissions, equity, vulnerability, development, human rights

Abstract

This article explores some of the similarities between the Arctic and Small Island Developing States (“SIDS”) as they confront the challenge of climate change. Both regions have been identified as the most vulnerable to climate change effects yet they contributed least to global greenhouse gas emissions. Responses to the effects of climate change raise important questions of equity. The Article examines how this equity is being addressed, both legally and politically, through an example of human rights challenge in the Arctic and the development of an alliance between the Arctic and SIDS called Many Strong Voices.

Citation

(2008) 8 Sustainable Development Law and Policy 8.

Paper

Snow, Sand, Ice, and Sun: Climate Change and Equity in the Arctic and Small Island Developing States

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Climate Change, Human Rights and Moral Thresholds (S. Caney)

Author(s)

Simon Caney

Keywords

frameworks, impacts of climate change, human rights-centered analysis, cost-benefit, security-based analyses, right to life, right to health, right to subsistence, ethics, anthropogenic climate change, violation of rights, policy, mitigation, adaptation, compensation, international relations, vulnerability

Abstract

EXTRACT:

“I argue that:

1. Climate change jeopardizes some key human rights.

2. A “human-rights”-centered analysis of the impacts of climate change enjoys several fundamental advantages over other dominant ways of thinking about climate change.

3. A “human-rights”-centered analysis of the impacts of climate change has far-reaching implications for our understanding of the kind of action that should be taken and who should bear the costs of combating climate change.”

Citation

Simon Caney, ‘Climate Change, Human Rights and Moral Thresholds’ in: Gardner et al., eds., Climate Ethics (Oxford University Press, 2010)

Paper

‘Climate Change’, Human Rights and Moral Thresholds’ in Climate Ethics

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