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Climate Justice

    January 26, 2021

    Amnesty International is extremely concerned about human rights harms resulting from climate change and  we therefore urge governments and companies to cease investments that expand fossil fuel exploration and production, including the development of new infrastructure. Amnesty Canada has joined a coalition representing over 3.5 million Canadians calling on Prime Minister Trudeau to cancel the Trans Mountain pipeline project because it conflicts with Canada's climate policy goals. Amnesty further urges the Canadian government to ensure that the transition to a zero carbon economy is "just" and done in a way that reduces inequalities and protects the rights of workers and vulnerable communities.

    To the Right Honourable Justin Trudeau,
    Cc: Federal Cabinet Ministers

    January 05, 2021

    In addition to the pandemic, the world is simultaneously facing another emergency– the climate crisis. And while the climate crisis might seem abstract and far off to some, it is already gravely impacting the lives of millions of people around the world, and will get worse with time if urgent action is not taken now.

    It’s high time the Canadian government and Canada’s provincial governments started treating the climate crisis like the emergency it is. Amnesty International urges Canada’s federal and provincial governments to take urgent action to reduce emissions quickly, while ensuring that human rights are always protected.

    Sign e-petition to Canadian government

    December 04, 2020

    Canada’s announcement of a climate accountability bill (Bill C-12: Canadian Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act) is a step in the right direction but is insufficient to ensure human rights protection in the face of climate change.

    To meet its international human rights obligations, Canada must ensure that the shift towards a zero-carbon economy and a more resilient society: addresses systemic inequalities, combats discrimination, and promotes gender, class, racial, disability and intergenerational justice; ensures a just transition for workers and communities impacted by the shift from a fossil fuel economy; and respects, protects and fulfils human rights. These principles should be clearly set out in the bill’s preamble.

    September 26, 2020

    Today, 26 September, is the deadline for countries to sign the Regional Agreement on Access to Information, Public Participation and Justice in Environmental Matters in Latin America and the Caribbean (Escazú Agreement). For it to come into force, at least eleven countries must ratify it, therefore only one more is needed in addition to the ten countries that have already done so.

    "This agreement emerged from the need to urgently address the climate emergency that we are facing. When the treaty was opened for signatures exactly two years ago, hope also emerged that Latin America and the Caribbean could make history with a groundbreaking norm that could contribute to the protection of the environment and those who defend it. Countries in the region must not miss this important opportunity," said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director at Amnesty International.

    September 24, 2020

    World leaders must stop using COVID-19 as an excuse to delay urgent action to tackle the climate crisis or risk failing children and future generations further, Amnesty International said ahead of a global day of school strikes against climate change planned for 25 September by young people.

    Climate change was cited as one of the most important issues of our time in a survey of more than 10,000 young people published by Amnesty International just months before the pandemic turned the world upside down.

    “Amnesty International stands with all children and young people taking part in climate strikes. Children globally have faced unimaginable disruption to their lives, education and health as a result of COVID-19. That they must take more time out of school to demand that adults do the right thing is utterly shameful, but young people know only too well the unthinkable consequences of climate inaction to their lives and human rights.” said Ashfaq Khalfan, Amnesty International’s Law and Policy Director. 

    September 24, 2020

    Amnesty Canada volunteers are taking action for climate justice. Our new Climate Justice and Corporate Accountability Specialized Team brings together volunteers to collaborate on this exciting and vitally important issue. To join this volunteer team, email edumitru@amnesty.ca.

    Looking for other ways to get involved? Join us next week for an educational and thought-provoking evening entitled Climate Change – What it is and How it Affects us All. Register here.

    And please take a moment to sign Amnesty’s new e-petition to Canada’s Minister for Environment and Climate Change demanding strong climate action that respects human rights. Sign petition.

    Here are some other interesting climate updates:

    September 23, 2020

    Amnesty International will intervene today at the Supreme Court of Canada's carbon pricing hearing. 

    We firmly believe that without robust climate action at all levels of government, the climate crisis will continue to negatively impact a range of civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights, and disproportionately impact marginalized and vulnerable communities and groups.

    Amnesty's intervention at the Supreme Court today will emphasize the fundamental importance of Canada’s international human rights obligations and the need for these commitments to guide Canada’s climate action. We will argue that constitutional ambiguities with respect to division of powers between provincial and federal governments should be resolved in a way that both maximizes Canadian compliance with international obligations and facilitates provincial adherence to our obligations. 

    You can watch the Supreme Court of Canada's live webcast today.

    September 01, 2020

    The climate crisis is a monumental threat to human rights, like nothing humanity has ever experienced before.

    Last year, millions of people marched in climate strikes organized by youth around the world, demanding urgent action to stop the climate crisis.

    The next global climate strike will take place virtually on Friday, Sept 25th and we hope you will get involved!

    Here are five ways to participate in the climate strikes:

    1. Youth climate justice webinar – Join our climate justice webinar on Tuesday September 22nd. More information, bios of the amazing youth climate activists who are the panelists for the event, and the registration link are all here!

    September 04, 2019

    People typically think of the climate crisis as an environmental issue. But did you know it also spells big trouble for human rights? People in Canada and around the world are already experiencing the impacts of climate change – such as drought, flooding, extreme storms and heat, forest fires, and sea level rise – and it’s only going to get worse. People who are already disadvantaged, vulnerable or facing discrimination will be hardest hit.

    It is imperative that governments take urgent action to drastically reduce global greenhouse emissions before it’s too late. Furthermore, they must do so in a way that avoids further harming human rights. So far, the actions taken by the Canadian government and other states are inadequate to prevent a climate crisis. More ambitious action is necessary.

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