Sunday, May 9, 2010

The International Tribunal of Climate Change and Environmental Justice

Photo: Wiradjuri Traditional Owners protested Barrick Gold's mine destructive operation in Lake Cowal central western New South Wales and its cyanide poisoning. In Western Shoshone territory in the US, Barrick plans similar destruction to sacred Mount Tenabo.

The Tribunal of Climate Change and Environmental Justice
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The destruction of the earth by mining has resulted in profits for a few while Indigenous Peoples are left with a trail of death and disease in their homelands. At the World Peoples Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth in Bolivia, the people called for the establishment of a Climate Justice Tribunal, and reforms that will result in enforcement. Corporations and governments have knowingly targeted Indigenous territories, from Australia, Peru, Guatemala, Africa and Asia to Western Shoshone and Navajo lands in the US. Using corporate deceit and underpaying for coal and under resources, corporations have reaped the profits. The strategies have included the assassination of Indigenous activists and media campaigns that distorted the truth. Now, in Bolivia, the people say it is time for individuals, corporations and governments to be held responsible for their crimes before an international tribunal.

Final Conclusions working group 5: Climate Justice Tribunal
April 30, 2010 in 05. Climate Justice Tribunal, Working Groups

The peoples of the world have gathered at the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth in the city of Cochabamba, Bolivia, from 19 to 22 April, 2010. We, the Working Group of the Tribunal for Climate Justice, have made the following conclusions: 1.Considering the lack of political will by developed countries to fulfill their commitments and obligations under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol, and faced with the absence of an international legal framework to prevent and punish the climate and environmental crimes that violate the rights of Mother Earth and Humanity, we demand the creation of an International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice that has the legally binding capacity to prevent, judge, and punish those states, companies, and individuals that pollute and cause climate change by their actions or omissions.
2.The International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice should have the authority to judge, civilly and criminally, states, multilateral organizations, transnational corporations, and any legal persons responsible for aggravating the causes and impacts of climate change and environmental destruction against Mother Earth. Claims may be made by all peoples, nations, nationalities, states, individuals, or corporations who have been affected, without having exhausted national remedies.
3.The International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice should consist of representatives of the peoples, nations, nationalities and states committed to respect and uphold the principles of this court, with international jurisdiction and competence.
The Working Group on Climate Justice Tribunal makes the following recommendations:
1.We call upon the peoples of the world to use existing legal mechanisms and laws in their countries to prosecute and punish those who harm Mother Earth and Humanity and whose actions or omissions aggravate the causes and impacts of climate change, demanding the immediate cessation of activities.
2.We call upon the peoples of the world to join the struggle and mobilization for the consolidation of the International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice, and to put pressure on governments that do not meet their commitments under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol.
3.We call upon the peoples of the world to educate and raise awareness about the dangers caused by an economic system based on economic growth, the accumulation of profit and consumerism.
4.We urge the peoples of the world to propose and promote a thorough reform of the United Nations, in order that all Member States comply with the decisions of the International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice.
5.We urge the peoples of the world to further discussions on the independence, involvement and formation of the International Tribunal of Climate and Environmental Justice in relation to existing multilateral mechanisms.
6.We call upon the peoples of the world to join the struggle and the mobilization that is behind the ethical International People’s Tribunal on Ecological Debt and Climate Justice.
7.We encourage States to submit claims before the International Court of Justice against developed countries that are failing to fulfill their commitments under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol, including the commitment to reduce greenhouse gases emissions.

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