Learn with Lena: On Human Rights and the Environment

Human Rights and the Environment

Welcome to this week’s blog post from Learn with Lena. Lena is the RWI librarian who once every other week shares book tips on topics related to human rights! This month we are focusing on the thematic area of Human Rights and the Environment.

The recommended books can all be found and borrowed at the Raoul Wallenberg Library.  They are all placed on the same shelf section, 86, where more books on environment, climate change, disaster, biodiversity and issues related to climate change like migration.

There are books that are published many years ago, but they are still valid. One of them is Silent spring by Rachel Carson, published in 1962 already. An eye opener for many of us. The overarching theme of the book is the powerful and often negative effect humans have on the natural world. Sad in a way, that the book are still topical.

Global views on climate relocation and social justice

Idowu Jola Ajibade and A.R. Siders. 2022

From the publisher

This edited volume advances our understanding of climate relocation (or planned retreat), an emerging topic in the fields of climate adaptation and hazard risk, and provides a platform for alternative voices and views on the subject. As the effects of climate change become more severe and widespread, there is a growing conversation about when, where and how people will move. Climate relocation is a controversial adaptation strategy, yet the process can also offer opportunity and hope. This collection grapples with the environmental and social justice dimensions from multiple perspectives, with cases drawn from Africa, Asia, Australia, Oceania, South America, and North America… Works of art, photos, and quotes from flood survivors are also included, placed between sections to remind the reader of the human element in the adaptation debate. This volume provides new insights on a debate that touches us all: how we will live in the future and where?

The Paris Agreement : climate change, solidarity, and human rights

Judith Blau. 2017

Open access. Follow the link.
From the publisher

In the introduction the author writes: “The 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights affirms the equality of all people emphasizing that vulnerable people (such as children) deserve special protection. Yet, obviously, no two people are alike; we are different in infinite ways. Globalization, for all its many shortcomings and failings, has made us aware of our equality and our differences. This provides all the world’s peoples with the incentive and ability to collaborate in solidarity so that we can collectively slow climate warming”.

This book discusses the immediate and severe threat posed by global climate change and the various obstacles that stand in the way of action. Judith Blau presents scientific evidence relevant to The Paris Agreement (COP-21): an international treaty that promises to strengthen the global response to climate change. As she reckons with the dangers of catastrophic planetary heating, Blau discusses the clash between the deeply ingrained American tradition of individualism and the collective action and acknowledgement of intertwined fate needed to address climate change.  She acknowledges that America’s capitalist bent stands in contrast to the idea of the “commons”—a concept that we need to embrace if climate change is to be mitigated. The volume also explains the foundations of international human rights standards as they relate to climate change. Drawing from guiding principles of human rights and equality, the book concludes hopefully—suggesting that the people of the world can meet the challenge posed by climate change by at once acknowledging shared humanity and celebrating difference.

Biodiversity and Climate Change : Transforming the Biosphere

Edited by, Thomas E. Lovejoy, & Lee Hannah ; Foreword by Edward O. Wilson. 2019

From the publisher

An essential, up-to-date look at the critical interactions between biological diversity and climate change that will serve as an immediate call to action
The physical and biological impacts of climate change are dramatic and broad-ranging. People who care about the planet and manage natural resources urgently need a synthesis of our rapidly growing understanding of these issues. From extinction risk to ocean acidification, from the future of the Amazon to changes in ecosystem services, and from geoengineering to the power of ecosystem restoration, this book captures the sweep of climate change transformation of the biosphere.

The Oxford handbook of international climate change law

Edited by Cinnamon P. Carlarne, Kevin R. Gray, Richard G. Tarasofsky. 2016

From the publisher

Climate change presents one of the greatest challenges of our time, and has become one of the defining issues of the twenty-first century. The radical changes which both developed and developing countries will need to make, in economic and in legal terms, to respond to climate change are unprecedented. International law, including treaty regimes, institutions, and customary international law, needs to address the myriad challenges and consequences of climate change, including variations in the weather patterns, sea level rise, and the resulting migration of peoples. This book provides an authoritative overview of all aspects of international climate change law as it currently stands, with guidance for how it should develop in the future.

Climate change, disasters, and internal displacement in Asia and the Pacific : a human rights-based approach

Edited by Matthew Scott and Albert Salamanca. 2022

From the publisher

This book examines how states in eight countries across Asia and the Pacific address internal displacement in the context of disasters and climate change. The Asia and the Pacific region accounts for the majority of global disaster-related displacement, but the experience of the millions of individuals displaced differs according to gender, age, ethnicity, (dis)ability, caste, and so forth and is dependent on the legal, administrative, social, and economic structures and processes in place to support them. This book adopts a human rights-based approach, investigating the role of law and policy in preventing displacement, protecting people who are displaced, and engendering durable solutions across cases drawn from Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Nepal, Bangladesh, Vanuatu, and the Solomon Islands. The specific cases in the book also reflect critically on the term ‘displacement’ and the wider normative framework within which this phenomenon is conceptualised and addressed.

The book will be of interest to students, researchers, and practitioners working at the intersection of human rights, human mobility, development, disaster risk reduction and management, and climate change adaptation.

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