Law and Sustainability

Call for Papers Ecocide as an international crime? Perspectives from domestic and international law: The International Crimes Database (ICD), hosted by the T.M.C. Asser Institute in the Hague, invites submissions of short articles for publication in the online paper series ‘ICD Briefs’ on the theme: ‘Ecocide as an international crime? Perspectives from domestic and international law’. The recent proposal by the Stop Ecocide...

Events International Nuremberg Principles Academy (Nuremberg Academy): The International Nuremberg Principles Academy (Nuremberg Academy) is pleased to announce that the registration for the Nuremberg Forum 2021 is now open. The forum will take place online on 15 and 16 October 2021. Dedicated to marking the 70th anniversary of the Nuremberg Principles, the conference will examine the Nuremberg Principles today. It will...

[Arvind Ganesan is business and human rights director at Human Rights Watch.] The United Nations formally recognized a decade ago that businesses have a responsibility to respect human rights. It was a groundbreaking development. 10 years later, it’s clear that it was only a first step: we need laws that enforce companies’ duty to protect workers and communities from abuse and hold them accountable if they...

[Doug Cassel is Emeritus Professor of Law at Notre Dame Law School.] The U.S. Supreme Court ruled this month in Nestle USA Inc. v. Doe that “general corporate activity” in the U.S. is not a sufficient domestic basis to warrant Alien Tort Statute (ATS) jurisdiction over claims against a U.S. corporation for alleged human rights violations overseas. The media response generally echoed that of the...

In my previous posts on the crime of ecocide -- Post 1, Post 2 -- I argued the theoretical/normative case against the IEP's decision to subject lawful acts to anthropocentric cost-benefit analysis via the "wantonness" requirement. In this post, I want to bracket the issue of whether the definition of ecocide should distinguish between lawful and unlawful acts and question...

[Dr. Dalia Palombo  is a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Business Ethics, University of St. Gallen.] Imperialism and Transnational Human Rights Litigation How to hold multinationals to account for human rights abuses? This is a question that has tormented scholars, litigators and advocates. It is difficult to answer because the term “multinational” does not exist in law. From the legal perspective, a multinational is a conglomerate of...

[Gabrielle Holly is a Senior Adviser in the Human Rights and Business Department at the Danish Institute for Human Rights and an experienced commercial disputes practitioner. You can find her on twitter at @Gabriellellell.]  In recent years we have seen tremendous momentum behind moves to introduce mandatory human rights due diligence obligations in law, both at the national level and at the international...

[Paul Mougeolle is a representative of the association Notre Affaire à Tous, legal researcher for the NGO Global Legal Action Network (GLAN) and Ph.D. candidate at University of Paris Nanterre and University of Potsdam.] A wind of change is currently blowing in climate change litigation. Plaintiffs secure pioneering wins before the highest courts of Colombia, the Netherlands, Ireland, France and Germany. On the 26th of May...

[Jindan-Karena Mann is a PhD Researcher at the University of Amsterdam and Nicky Touw is a PhD Researcher at the Open University of the Netherlands.] The North Mara gold mine in Tanzania has been under scrutiny for many years now. Reports paint a picture of ongoing corruption, environmental harms, and human rights violations, including the excessive use of force by private security and police forces working with the mining...

I have been eagerly awaiting the results of the Independent Expert Panel for the Legal Definition of Ecocide (IEP), which includes a number of excellent lawyers and some close friends. The exercise has always been largely symbolic: even if 2/3 of states parties are willing to support an ecocide amendment, which is unlikely, an amendment to Art. 5 of the...

[Valentine Kunuji is a Commonwealth Scholarship alumnus and is currently a Doctoral Researcher at the Law School, University of East Anglia, Norwich UK, and his research is focused on International Law with particular reference to Business and Human Rights, International Investment Law, Access to Justice and Indigenous Peoples’ rights. Twitter: olu_11] Photo credit: Al Jazeera “You can never, never defeat Shell in...

By Tim Fish Hodgson, Legal Adviser on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights at the International Commission of Jurists and Rossella De Falco, Programme Officer on the Right to Health at Global Initiative on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Historically pandemics have often catalyzed significant social change. As historian of epidemics Frank Snowden puts it: “epidemics are a category of disease that seem to hold...