Amicus briefs submitted to the Philippines Commission on Human Rights

Below are amicus briefs and a letter submitted to the Philippines Commission on Human Rights regarding its investigation of 47 fossil fuel companies' contribution to climate change and human rights impacts.

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14 December 2018

Student competition: What recommendations should the Philippine Human Rights Commission give as a result of the Carbon Majors inquiry? (due 1 March 2019)

Author: Environmental Science for Social Change

Carbon Majors contest

The Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines is currently conducting an inquiry to determine the impact of climate change on the enjoyment of human rights in the Philippines and the responsibility of the world’s largest fossil fuel producers in this connection. To help inform the drafting of the Commission’s recommendations, a competition is being launched by the Institute of Environmental Science for Social Change in the Philippines, with the support ofthe Department of Law and the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), and the University of Stirling. The competition is open to students from any country. Download the mechanics here.

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Article
5 November 2018

Amicus Curiae Brief by UNICEF Philippines

Author: UNICEF Philippines

UNICEF Philippines is pleased to submit the following amicus curiae brief to the Honourable Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines with a view to assisting the Commission in its National Inquiry on the Impact of Climate Change on the Rights of the Filipino People and the Responsibility therefore of the “Carbon Majors”. In particular, this brief seeks to inform the Commission’s investigations by highlighting the specific vulnerabilities of children to the impacts of climate change in the Philippines, and the wide-ranging implications for their rights, as laid down in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. The brief draws on the UNICEF Philippines’ recently-completed Climate Landscape Analysis for Children in the Philippines – the first study of its kind – as well as other relevant national reports, research and frameworks, scientific evidence, and guidance from the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child and other human rights mechanisms.

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Article
26 March 2018

Experts submit Joint Summary of Amicus Curiae Briefs to Philippines Human Rights Commission in support of climate change inquiry

Author: CIEL, ClientEarth, Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide, Maastricht Principles Drafting Group, Our Children's Trust, Plan B, Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions & the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions, Dr. James Hansen & Dr. Kevin E. Trenberth

"Joint Summary of the Amicus Curiae Briefs", 26 March 2018

On May 9, 2016, Greenpeace Southeast Asia and the Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement along with other individuals and non-governmental organizations in the Philippines filed a petition with the Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines requesting an investigation of the responsibility of the Carbon Majors for human rights violations or threats of violations resulting from the impacts of climate change. The legal scholars, experts, and human rights practitioners listed hereunder submitted amicus curiae briefs in support of the Petitioners in this critical and globally significant proceeding.

...Key findings [include]:

  • The Commission’s mandate to investigate the claims raised in the Petition is wellfounded, both in national law as well as in international law practice...
  • States’ human rights obligations demand effective investigations into the human rights violations alleged by the Petitioners...
  • The harmful effects of climate change pose an enormous threat to human rights in the Philippines and abroad... [including] rights to life, health, clean water and sanitation, food, adequate housing, self-determination and development, and equality and non-discrimination...
  • The Carbon Majors have long known that the production and use of their products contribute substantially to climate change, which continues to have significant impacts and adverse consequences for people... [and] knowingly advanced or promoted deliberately misleading information.

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Report
26 March 2018

Joint Statement to Philippines Commission on Human Rights

Author: CIEL, ClientEarth, Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide, Maastricht Principles Drafting Group, Our Children's Trust, Plan B, Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions & the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions, Dr. James Hansen & Dr. Kevin E. Trenberth

The undersigned organizations and individuals are honored to share with the Commission on Human Rights the attached Joint Summary of the Amicus Curiae Briefs submitted in support of Petitioners, Greenpeace Southeast Asia et al. Through this submission, the undersigned amici hope to facilitate the Commission’s review of the evidence and analysis presented by the amici in their respective briefs and to aid the Commission’s path-breaking inquiry into the responsibility of the Carbon Majors companies for human rights violations or threats of violations resulting from the impacts of climate change.

... The amici are united in their common concern at the scale and urgency of the climate crisis, the impacts of which are now felt on a daily basis throughout the Philippines and around the world. As an extensive body of peer-reviewed science demonstrates, climate change is causing severe environmental, economic, and social impacts at current levels of planetary warming, and these impacts only will intensify with any additional warming... Given these immense human rights impacts, it is equally important that people have access to justice... [and] [t]his groundbreaking proceeding before the Commission presents one such critically important avenue. Though the present inquiry is not judicial in nature, the Commission’s findings and recommendations can play a vital role in bringing the truth to light, laying the foundations for accountability, and respecting, protecting, and promoting human rights in the Philippines and beyond.

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Article
1 November 2017

Amicus Curiae Brief by James E. Hansen

Author: James E. Hansen, Director, Earth Institute, Columbia University

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Article
12 May 2017

Amicus Curiae Brief by Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions & the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions

Author: Dr Annalisa Savaresi, Dr Ioana Cismas, & Dr Jacques Hartmann with the assistance of Tim Tabuteau & Jenni Whelan

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Article
9 February 2017

Amicus Curiae Brief by Center for International Environmental Law

Author: Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL)

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Article
9 February 2017

Annex to CIEL's Opinion in Support of Petitioners

Author: Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL)

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Article
23 January 2017

Amicus Curiae Brief by Maastricht Principles Drafting Group

Author: Olivier De Schutter, Asbjørn Eide, Ashfaq Khalfan, Marcos A. Orellan, Ian Seiderman, Rolf Künnemann, Jernej Letnar Černič, and Bret Thiele

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Article
23 January 2017

Amicus Curiae Brief by Our Children's Trust

Author: Our Children’s Trust

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