ICCAs are rich with natural resources such as forests, rivers, fisheries and sub-surface minerals. As such, they are often the targets of aggressive industrial extraction, which can inflict a range of environmental and human rights violations. National and multinational enterprises are often arranged and financed through complex corporate structures and investment chains that make it more difficult to identify and hold those responsible for such violations. However, some advances are slowly being made at the international level, including the adoption of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (also known as the “Ruggie Framework”) in 2007, and the strengthening of policies and safeguards of international financial institutions such as the World Bank Group and intergovernmental organisations such as OECD. UN human rights procedures are increasingly active as well. The Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues held an international expert workshop in 2009 on indigenous peoples’ rights, the extractive industry and corporate social responsibility. The (former) UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, Professor James Anaya, focused his final report to the Human Rights Council in 2013 on extractive industries and indigenous peoples. In 2014, the Human Rights Council established an open-ended intergovernmental working group to elaborate an international legally binding instrument to regulate, in international human rights law, the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises.
The ICCA Consortium and its Members are getting increasingly involved in this area of law and policy, with a particular emphasis on supporting environmental and human rights defenders and protecting ICCAs as “no go” areas against unjust and environmentally destructive enterprises. This includes efforts to establish a Solidarity and Action Fund for Defenders of the Commons and ICCAs and pursuing remedy and redress for specific cases of violations such as through UN human rights treaty bodies and national human rights institutions. It also includes promoting stronger recognition of indigenous peoples’ and local communities’ rights and concerns in standards and safeguards of financial institutions and financial mechanisms for environmental issues (such as the Global Environment Facility).
On 5 March 2018, the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, Mr. John H. Knox, presented the final report (A/HRC/37/59) of his mandate to the 37th Session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, which identifies 16 framework principles on human rights and the environment, addresses the human right to a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment and looks ahead to the next steps in the evolving relationship between human rights and the environment.
According to Mr. John H. Knox, the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, “No group is more vulnerable to environmental harm than children. More than 1.5 million children under the age of five lose their lives every year because of pollution and other avoidable environmental harms.
In March 2018, the UN Environment Programme (UN Environment) launched its new Environmental Defenders Policy, which proposes how it can promote greater protection for individuals and groups who are defending their environmental rights, and identifies solutions to mitigate the abuse of environmental rights.
The ICCA Consortium joined over 30 Global Environmental Facility CSO Network members, including the Global Forest Coalition , participating in the 53rd GEF Council meeting and CSO Consultation. Here are some outcomes and some elements to watch for in the coming months!
The ICCA Consortium participated to the 2017 UNFBHR with an important delegation. It co-lead the parallel event : Building bridges for Indigenous Peoples’ access to … Continue reading “UN Forum on Business and Human Rights”
Taller de intercambio regional de capacitación en técnicas y herramientas de gestión de los TICCA y modelos de desarollo
Taller de intercambio regional de capacitación en técnicas y herramientas de gestión de los TICCA y modelos de desarollo Santiago de Chiquitos, Santa Cruz … Continue reading “Taller de intercambio regional de capacitación en técnicas y herramientas de gestión de los TICCA y modelos de desarollo”
Extractive Industries, Land Rights and indigenous Populations’/Communities Rights, East, Central and Southern Africa, Report of the African Commission’s Working Group on Indigenous Populations/Communities. Submitted in … Continue reading “Extractive Industries, Land Rights and indigenous Populations’/Communities Rights”
Legal Review No 1 International Law and Jurisprudence This report is part of a larger study conducted by the ICCA Consortium between 2011-2012, which … Continue reading “Legal Review No 1 International Law and Jurisprudence”
Report: “Tenure and Investment in Africa: Synthesis Report” TMP Systems and RRI (2017)
Tool: “ACCESS Facility database of non-judicial grievance mechanisms”
Tool: “Human Rights and Grievance Mechanisms”
Report: “Miracle or Mirage? Manufacturing Hunger and Poverty in Ethiopia” Oakland Institute (2016)