Renewable energy & human rights
Renewable energy is key for our transition to a low-carbon economy, but companies’ human rights policies and practices are not yet strong enough to ensure this transition is both fast and fair.
The resources below provide a series of briefings analysing renewable energy companies' human rights policies and practices. The briefings highlight human rights concerns, examples of good practice, as well as cases showing that failure to respect human rights can result in project delays, legal procedures and costs for renewable energy companies, underlying the urgency to strengthen human rights due diligence. Additional information is available in our coverage of the latest news relating to renewable energy.
This benchmark methodology establishes the first-ever set of indicators against which renewable energy companies’ human rights policies and practices can be evaluated both on an individual company level and in comparison to their industry peers. The pilot benchmark, including company names and scores, will be released in 2020. It will aim to create a race to the top on human rights in the renewable energy sector, bolstered by investors, in support of a just transition to a low-carbon economy.
This report highlights that renewable energy project developers and operators can best support the achievement of the SDGs by incorporating responsible and human rights-respecting practices into their core business operations and collaborating with other stakeholders to amplify impact, and in doing so will also minimize risk and support a sustainable transition to a low-carbon economy. The final version will be released in June 2019.
This briefing analyses 50 wind, hydropower and utility companies’ human rights policies and practices as well as allegations about wind and hydropower projects. It argues that a fast transition to renewable energy is essential, but it will be neither fair for people nor sustainable for companies unless undertaken with human rights considerations at its core.
This briefing analyses 59 solar, bioenergy and geothermal companies' human rights policies and practices on five key areas: human rights commitment, community consultations, grievance mechanisms, labour rights and supply chain monitoring. It provides information on allegations against companies as well as emerging best practices.
This briefing sets out how investors can help tackle the climate crisis while respecting human rights in a just transition. It is divided into five snapshots, which provide statistics and case studies highlighting key human rights risks and impacts for each of the major renewable energy subsectors: wind, solar, bioenergy, geothermal, and hydropower. For our previous investor briefing focused on community impacts, see here.
The Transition Minerals Tracker is a project that tracks mining operations related to solar energy, wind energy and electric vehicles worldwide. This tracker seeks to improve the human rights practices of companies that produce the minerals vital to the renewable energy and electric vehicles sectors, by shedding light on the key human rights risks in the geographies where they operate, and the human rights policies and practices of the most important companies in this sub-sector.
The Resource Centre’s interactive platforms on renewable energy provide a mapping of company responses from the wind & hydropower sectors as well as the solar, bioenergy and geothermal sectors. Renewable energy companies and investors can explore and compare company approaches to human rights. Companies will find useful resources on how to improve their human rights policies and practices.
The Resource Centre is collecting case studies of best practices and allegations of abuse against renewable energy companies. Cases are featured on our online portal and can be explored by region, sector, and type of issue. Companies, investors and civil society are welcome to share cases by emailing [email protected]
Related stories and components
Author: Noticieros Televisa
“Nunca más permisos para afectar al medio ambiente: AMLO sobre parque eólico de La Rumorosa”, 28 de marzo de 2020...
- Related in-depth areas: Renewable energy & human rights
Commentary: Human rights risks threaten battery supply chains' sustainability - now is the time to act
Author: Stephanie Regalia, Natural Resources Research Assistant
The battery and renewable energy industries are facing increased scrutiny for their human rights impacts...In response to growing concerns over the impacts of the transition to a low-carbon economy, the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre ...
Mexico: Report alleges the violation of the rights of indigenous community in Unión Hidalgo, Oaxaca following the establishment of EDF wind farm
Author: European Centre for Constitutional Human Rights (ECCHR)
"Civil society space in renewable energy projects A case study of the Unión Hidalgo community in Mexico", December 2019...
Author: Scatec Solar
Scatec Solar está comprometido con altos estándares para la gestión de la sostenibilidad, incluido la salud y la seguridad, la sostenibilidad ambiental, la conducta ética y los derechos humanos. Nos guiamos y cumplimos con estándares internacionalme...
- Related stories: Honduras: Red de personas defensoras señala que el proyecto de paneles solares de Scatec Solar ha llevado a la criminalización y ningún beneficio a la comunidad
- Related in-depth areas: Lawsuits Renewable energy & human rights Últimas noticias sobre defensoras/es
- This is a response from the following companies: Scatec Solar
Netherlands: Report finds that wind turbine manufacturers are not meeting due diligence obligations under OECD Guidelines; incl. company responses
In November 2019, ActionAid and SOMO (Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations) released the report Human Rights in Wind Turbine Supply Chains Update 2019, which analyses responsible business policies and practices of seven wind turbine...
Author: Amanda Romero (Centro de Información sobre Empresas y Derechos Humanos), José Aylwin y Marcel Didier (Observatorio Ciudadano, Chile)
“Globalización de las empresas de energía renovable: Extracción de litio y derechos de los pueblos indígenas en Argentina, Bolivia y Chile (“Triángulo del Litio”)” – Diciembre de 2019...
- Related in-depth areas: Renewable energy & human rights Últimas noticias sobre recursos naturales
- Related companies: Albemarle FMC Galaxy Resources Ganfeng Lithium Jujuy Energía y Minería Sociedad del Estado (JEMSE) Lithium Americas (part of Ganfeng Lithium & Bangchak Co. Public) Livent (formerly part of FMC) Minera Exar SA (joint venture of Jemse, Lithium Americas & Ganfeng Lithium) Orocobre Pluspetrol Rockwood Lithium (part of Albemarle) Sales de Jujuy Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile (SQM) TBEA YLB (Yacimientos de Litio Bolivianos)
42 organisations and companies agree on guiding principles for the creation of sustainable batteries by 2030
Author: Modern Diplomacy
"42 Global Organizations Agree on Guiding Principles for Batteries to Power Sustainable Energy Transition", 23 January 2020....
- Related in-depth areas: Climate justice Latest news on natural resources Natural Resources Renewable energy & human rights
- Related companies: Analog Devices Audi (part of Volkswagen) BASF BMW Enel Envision Eurasian Resources Group (ERG) Fairphone Greentech Capital Advisors Honda Johnson Matthey LeasePlan Renault SGS SK Innovation Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile (SQM) Umicore Volkswagen Volvo Group