Tag Archives: livelihoods

A Moral Imperative: The Human Rights Implications of Climate Change (S. C. Aminzadeh)

Author

Sara C. Aminzadeh

Keywords

climate change, environment, human rights, social rights, food security, public health, livelihoods

Abstract

Climate change is increasingly identified as one of the major crises facing the international community in the 21st century. Even conservative forecasts predict dramatic effects to environments, economies, and people around the world. Although climate change is already understood as an environmental problem, and increasingly as an economic one,  the social and human rights implications of climate change are given little discussion. Yet climate change threatens food security, public health, property, and the livelihoods and lives of members of affected communities. Like other environmental issues, climate change threatens the human rights of those living in affected communities.

The ultimate goal of climate change advocacy is to encourage nations to scale back their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to a point where GHG concentrations in the atmosphere stabilize and then decrease to a level that prevents dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system. However, the sheer size of the problem and the cost of mitigation have forestalled meaningful engagement and cooperation on the issue. Lawyers and environmental advocates have begun to use litigation and other legal avenues as a way to forge progress. One particularly innovative example is a team of lawyers who recently used a human rights approach to climate change in a petition filed on behalf of the Inuit Circumpolar Conference in the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR). 

This note aims to continue the discourse prompted by the Inuit Petition and explore related issues on climate change and human rights…

Citation

(2007) 30 Hastings International and Comparative Law Review 231.

Paper

A Moral Imperative: The Human Rights Implications of Climate
Change

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Climate Change and Human Rights: A Rough Guide (International Council on Human Rights Policy)

Author

International Council on Human Rights Policy

Keywords

Human rights, climate change, mass migration, food, water, disease, shelter, land, cultures, livelihoods

Abstract

What are the human rights implications of climate change? From new health risks, such as the increased incidence of malaria, to mass migration, to threatened food and water supplies, to the disappearance of shelter, land, livelihoods and cultures, climate change creates human rights concerns at every turn. Yet remarkably little study to date has focused systematically on their interconnection.

This situation is unlikely to last. As the effects of climate change become increasingly apparent, those affected will turn to human rights to frame their claims and to demand responses. Some are already doing so. And as consensus on the need for urgent action to address global warming grows, it will drive numerous other economic, political and social agendas – with further human rights implications.

Human rights are not merely relevant to climate change impacts, however. Mitigation and adaptation strategies each open up hard human rights questions: assigning accountability for extraterritorial harms; allocating burdens and benefits, rights and duties among perpetrators and victims, both public and private; constructing reliable enforcement mechanisms. Human rights advocates will be forced to look hard at large justice issues they can usually set aside.

In thinking through these connections, foresight but also caution will be needed. Human rights can seem intellectually invasive; a tendency to think in moral absolutes can cloud rather than clarify complex issues. Human rights lawyers are not known for seeking consensus or conciliation, both generally thought critical to the negotiation of policies that can successfully address climate change. At the same time, profound justice claims have been raised repeatedly in the course of climate change negotiations only to be finally neglected or removed.

The Council commenced research on this subject in 2007, in order to help orient human rights thinking about climate change and to frame the relevant issues clearly. Our aim has been to identify, on one hand, whether human rights principles, law and policy are equipped for the immense problems generated by global warming and, on the other, how human rights tools can aid in constructing a just regime to manage and mitigate climate change effects.

Citation

International Council on Human Rights Policy, ‘Climate Change and Human Rights: A Rough Guide’ (ICHR, 2008 Switzerland)

Report

Climate Change and Human Rights: A Rough Guide

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A Property Rights Approach to Understanding Human Displacement from Protected Areas: the Case of Marine Protected Areas

Author(s)

Michael B. Mascia
C. Anne Claus

Keywords

Local peoples, protected areas, social impacts, fisherfolk, livelihoods, marine reserves, national parks

Abstract

The physical, economic, and sociocultural displacement of local peoples from protected areas generates intense discussion among scholars and policy makers. To foster greater precision and clarity in these discussions, we used a conceptual framework from the political economy literature to examine different forms of human displacement from protected areas. Using marine protected areas (MPAs) to ground our analysis, we characterized the 5 types of property rights that are reallocated (lost, secured, and gained) through the establishment of protected areas. All forms of MPA “displacement” involve reallocation of property rights, but the specific types and bundles of rights lost, secured, and gained dramatically shape the magnitude, extent, and equity of MPA impacts—positive and negative—on governance, economic well-being, health, education, social capital, and culture. The impacts of reallocating rights to MPA resources vary within and among social groups, inducing changes in society, in patterns of resource use, and in the environment. To create more environmentally sustainable and socially just conservation practice, a critical next step in conservation social science research is to document and explain variation in the social impacts of protected areas.

Citation

(2009) 23 Conservation Biology 16-23

Paper

A Property Rights Approach to Understanding Human Displacement from Protected Areas: the Case of Marine Protected Areas

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Integration of smallholder wetland aquaculture–agriculture systems (fingerponds) into riparian farming systems on the shores of Lake Victoria, Kenya: socio-economics and livelihoods

Author(s)

J Kipkemboi
A.A. Van Dam
M.M. Ikiara
P. Denny

Keywords

Kenya, wetlands, integrated aquaculture production, socio-economic analysis, livelihoods, food security, fingerponds

Abstract

This paper presents the results of experimental fingerponds: an integrated flood recession aquaculture–agriculture production system in the Lake Victoria wetlands in Kenya. The overall aim of the study is to assess the potential of fingerponds as a sustainable wetland farming system for improving food security at the subsistence level and within the context of the existing livelihood activities. The contribution of this new activity to rural household livelihoods is evaluated. Since it is a sustainable technology, based on natural events, the production level is intermediate and the benefits may not be high in the short term. Economic analysis shows that the gross margin and net income of fingerponds is about 752 and 197 Euros per hectare per year, respectively. This is about an 11% increase in the annual gross margin of an average rural household around Lake Victoria. The additional per capita fish supply is 3 kg per season or more from a 192 m² pond. The potential fish protein supply of 200 kg/ha is high compared with most existing terrestrial protein production systems. Fingerponds have the potential to contribute to household food security and to improve livelihoods. Sensitivity analysis indicates that biophysical variations, which may occur from one wetland to another, have implications for the functioning, and consequently the economic performance, of fingerponds. This reinforces the need for the integration of these systems into other household activities to buffer the household against potential risk

Citation

(2007) 173 Geographical Journal 257-272

Paper

Integration of smallholder wetland aquaculture–agriculture systems (fingerponds) into riparian farming systems on the shores of Lake Victoria, Kenya: socio-economics and livelihoods

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Water and Post-Conflict Peacebuilding (E. Weinthal, et al)

Editor(s)

Erika Weinthal, Jessica Troell, and Mikiyasu Nakayama

Keywords

Water, Livelihoods, Economic Reconstruction and Recovery, Political Ecology, Water Resource Management, Agricultural Productivity, Flood Control, Peace Processes, Confidence Building, Transboundary Cooperation, Peace and Dialogue, Riparian Stakeholders, Water Security and Scarcity, Transnational Cooperation, Refugee Rehabilitation, Policy, Institutional Aspects, Water ServicesCommunity Water Resource Management, The Right to Water and Sanitation, Legal Mechanisms, Sustainable Water Management

Abstract

Water resources play a unique and varied role in post-conflict recovery and peacebuilding. As a basic human need, the provision of safe water is among the highest priorities of government and humanitarian interventions during post-conflict recovery and peacebuilding. Water, sanitation, and infrastructure also play a critical role in supporting the recovery of livelihoods and economic development in the aftermath of war. Moreover, despite predictions of “water wars,” shared waters have proven to be the natural resource with the greatest potential for interstate cooperation and confidence building. Indeed, water resource management plays a singularly important role in both facilitating the rebuilding of trust following conflict and preventing a return to conflict. This volume draws on case studies from around the world to create a framework for understanding how decisions and activities governing water resources in a post-conflict setting can facilitate or undermine peacebuilding. The lessons learned are of particular interest to international development and humanitarian practitioners, policymakers, students, and others interested in post-conflict peacebuilding and the nexus between water resource management and conflict.

Water and Post-Conflict Peacebuilding is part of a global initiative to identify and analyze lessons in post-conflict peacebuilding and natural resource management. The project has generated six volumes of case studies and analyses, with contributions by practitioners, policymakers, and researchers. Other volumes address high-value resources; land; livelihoods; restoration, remediation, and reconstruction; and governance.

Citation

Erika Weinthal, et al (eds), Water and Post-Conflict Peacebuilding (Earthscan, 2011)

Book

Water and Post-Conflict Peacebuilding

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