Document Type

Article

Publication Year

1995

Journal Title

Human Rights Brief

Abstract

Since the early 1970s, the international community has widely acknowledged the nexus between human rights and environmental protection. References to this association and even to a human right to some minimal quality of environment, can be found in numerous international instruments. The Stockholm Declaration on the Human Environment, for example, proclaims that human beings have the "fundamental right to freedom, equality and adequate conditions of life, in an environment of a quality that permits a life of dignity and well-being." Similarly, the Additional Protocol to the American Convention on Human Rights states that "everyone shall have the right to live in a healthy environment."

Despite this widespread acknowledgement of the relationship between human rights and environmental protection, the convergence of these two ideals has remained primarily as an academic issue. On the practical level, efforts to develop a comprehensive strategy for addressing common themes, by both human rights an1d environmental activists, have been overshadowed by the individual needs and goals of each community.

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