This year’s Human Rights Day marks the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) which was adopted and proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly on 10 December 1948. For 10 December 2018, a number of high-level events are being organized including a UN High Commissioner for Human Rights conference in Paris, a ceremony for the United Nations Human Rights Prize in New York and the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony in Stockholm.
While these and other events are focussed on celebrating the achievements of human rights, the Earth Trusteeship Forum will emphasize the linkages between human rights and responsibilities with respect to humanity’s predicament, i.e. living sustainably on a finite planet. The safe and just operating space for humanity is marked by social foundations (human rights) and ecological limits (planetary boundaries). As humanity has now breached some of these ecological limits, continued living in dignity and prosperity requires a profound sense of responsibility and trusteeship for Earth.
ResponsAbility challenges conventional thinking about our governance and legal frameworks. The cross-currents of persisting, established worldviews, knowledge systems, institutions, law and forms of governance are now at odds with future-facing innovations designed to help societies transition to both low-carbon economies and social equity. This book explores the ways in which we can move to new governance and legal structures that more effectively reflect our changed relationship with the Earth in the Anthropocene.
The book is written by a group of eminent scholars and leading experts from a diverse range of backgrounds, all of whom bring new knowledge and analysis from across oceanic and continental regions. Many are from the discipline of law, whilst others bring expertise on indigenous knowledge, climate, water, governance and philosophy to engage with law. Contributors include His Highness Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Ta’isi Efi, Head of State of Samoa, Judge Sir E. Taikākurei Durie, Dame Anne Salmond, Pierre Calame and Adrian Macey. A number of scenarios are presented throughout the book for the realignment of global and local law to institutionalise responsibility for social, environmental and earth-centered equity.
Following the debate during the ongoing COP24 in Poland (the 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change – started on Monday 3 December 2018), one thing is clear. The main task of COP24 is to develop a set of decisions to ensure the implementation of the Paris Agreement, initiated at COP21, in 2015.
However, if we don’t radically change our way of thinking, it is unlikely that we will be able to rise to the challenges of the 21st century...