Event Reports

Symposium: New Frontiers in Global Environmental Constitutionalism

Implementing Human and Environmental Rights in Global Contexts

The symposium examined whether and the extent to which constitutional and other rights-based approaches, including international and regional human rights, promote environmental protection.

Advancing the work of the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the Environment, this practical and academic programme congregated leading voices in environmental governance and advanced understanding of global good practices with the aim of informing conversations about implementing rights-based approaches and advancing training in this critical area of environmental governance.

In tandem with the development of environmental law at the international, regional, national, and subnational levels, the rights-based approach has emerged as a basis for enhancing environmental protection across the globe. The symposium discussed questions as how rights-based approaches can contribute to addressing global environmental challenges like climate change, or framework governance modalities like sustainable development and environmental justice? The symposium had three principal objectives. First, to examine good practices in the implementation of rights-based approaches to environmental protection. Second, to provide a high-level platform for engaging the global conversation about comparative environmental rights-based approaches among policy-makers and governments, practitioners, non-governmental organizations, civil society, scholars, educators, and post-graduate students. And, third, to propel the development of training materials to advance rights-based approaches to environmental governance.