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Assembly Hall

MRG joins NGO statement on the recognition at the universal level of the right of all to a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment

9 March 2021

The following statement was delivered in the framework of the 46th session of the UN Human Rights Council by Earthjustice, on behalf of a group of NGOs, including Minority Rights Group International.

Thank you, Madam President.

This statement is delivered on behalf of 20 organizations.

We convey today the call endorsed by 1’100 organizations urging this Council to recognize the right of all to a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment. In this appeal initiated at the last Council’s session, organizations from more than 100 countries and from a great diversity of constituencies rallied around the recognition that “The Time Is Now” for the protection of our right to a healthy planet.

We welcome the remarkable joint statement of UN agencies and we fully support the statement delivered by the core group on human rights and environment asking States to engage constructively in this process at the Council.

All these calls reflect the fact that a large majority of States already have such a right in their Constitutions and laws, also explicitly recognized by regional systems. The time is ripe for the global recognition of this right which is a matter of utmost urgency.

Three global environmental crises – the pollution crisis, the biodiversity crisis and the global warming crisis, as identified by UNEP and science – already violate and jeopardize the human rights of billions of people. Human rights must be fully protected in the face of these increasing and intersecting environmental crises.

Thank you for your attention.