UN sounds alarm over climate change's impact on human rights

Bachelet cited the plight of indigenous people in an Amazon ravaged by wildfires and deforestation as an example of human rights
Bachelet cited the plight of indigenous people in an Amazon ravaged by wildfires and deforestation as an example of human rights violations

Climate change is not only having a devastating impact on the environments we live in, but also on respect for human rights globally, the UN warned Monday, urging collective action.

UN rights chief Michelle Bachelet cited the civil wars sparked by a warming planet and the plight of indigenous people in an Amazon ravaged by wildfires and rampant deforestation.

She also denounced attacks on , particularly in Latin America, and the abuse aimed at high-profile figures such as teenage campaigner Greta Thunberg.

"The world has never seen a threat to of this scope," she told the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

"The economies of all nations, the institutional, political, social and cultural fabric of every state, and the rights of all your people, and , will be impacted" by , she warned.

The 42nd session of the council opened with a minute of silence for the victims of Hurricane Doriane in the Bahamas, where at least 44 have been killed and thousands of homes reduced to rubble.

"The storm accelerated with unprecedented speed over an ocean warmed by shifts, becoming one of the strongest Atlantic hurricanes ever to hit land," Bachelet said.

Low-lying small island states like the Bahamas, which are heavily impacted by climate change, are quickly seeing rights to water, sanitation, health, food, work and adequate housing, she warned. She called for international action to mitigate the impact there.

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights also denounced the "drastic acceleration of deforestation of the Amazon.

Bachelet denounced the attacks on environmental campaigners and the abuse directed against teeager campaigner Greta Thunberg
Bachelet denounced the attacks on environmental campaigners and the abuse directed against teeager campaigner Greta Thunberg

"The fires currently raging across the rainforest may have catastrophic impact on humanity as a whole, but their worst effects are suffered by the women, men and children who live in these areas," she said.

"Prevent future tragedies'

She urged authorities in Bolivia, Paraguay and Brazil to "ensure the implementation of longstanding environmental policies ... thus preventing future tragedies."

Bachelet's comments risk further angering Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who last week accused her of meddling in his country's affairs after she criticized the deteriorating rights situation there.

The UN rights chief also highlighted the impact climate change is having on insecurity around the world. She cited a UN estimate that 40 percent of over the past six decades have been linked to environmental degradation.

In the Sahel region of Africa for instance, degradation of arable land "is intensifying competition for already scarce resources," she said. This in turn exacerbates ethnic tensions, and fuels violence and political instability, she added.

Bachelet lamented that those sounding the alarm over the devastating impacts of climate change are often attacked.

UN experts, she said, had "noted attacks on environmental human rights defenders in virtually every region, particularly in Latin America."

"I am disheartened by this violence, and also by the verbal attacks on young activists such as Greta Thunberg and others, who galvanize support for prevention of the harm their generation may bear," Bachelet said.

"The demands made by environmental defenders and activists are compelling, and we should respect, protect and fulfill their rights."


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Citation: UN sounds alarm over climate change's impact on human rights (2019, September 9) retrieved 18 September 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-09-alarm-climate-impact-human-rights.html
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Sep 09, 2019
For all that they protest, those who claim to care about "climate change" really don't.
Those who really care can be said to have certain common traits. They don't just accept "explanations" because they are told to. They involve themselves, they think about a situation. They can begin to look into alternative statements even if just to see if they won't work. And they certainly don't accept specious dodges as "proof" alternatives are untrue! Mention chemtrails, the government project of doping the air with weather modification chemicals from high flying jets, producing long, non dissipating vapor lanes that stretch from horizon to horizon and can last for an hour or more and those who say they care about "climate change" won't listen. They won't even say the word!
Note how fostering civil wars and constant strife is precisely the thing that governments would use weather modification to try to achieve!

Sep 09, 2019
lol , they can't wait to attack our 'human rights'

Sep 09, 2019
abuse aimed at high-profile figures such as teenage campaigner Greta Thunberg.

Exploiting the ignorance of a child, who believes she can see CO2, and then using her to further spread your deceit to innocent children across the globe. Nope, that's not abuse. Seeding anger, hate and fear just to sustain your existence, are the tools of cults and religion and certainly not below the UN.

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