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date: 17 September 2021

Abstract and Keywords

In recent public and activist debates, threats to the sustainability of the global ecosystem, such as climate change, have increasingly been posed in terms that link the impact on human well-being to questions of rights. Environmental human rights are emerging in national and international legal practice and have been invoked by environmental political theorists seeking to explicate and justify obligations to protect and sustain the environment and to secure justice for both contemporary communities and future generations. This chapter addresses three key questions in order to unpack the concept of environmental human rights: (1) Why adopt a human rights approach? (2) How have environmental human rights been conceived? and (3) What does an account of environmental human rights entail for rights holders and duty bearers?

Keywords: environment, human rights, justice, future generations, climate change

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