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2024 Joint Declaration on Freedom of Expression and the Climate Crisis

3 May 2024.

Today, the specialised mandates tasked with promoting and protecting freedom of expression at the UN, OAS, OSCE and African Commission launched their annual Joint Declaration, this year on the Climate Crisis and Freedom of Expression. The Joint Declaration, which was drafted with the assistance of the Centre for Law and Democracy (CLD), describes the important role of freedom of expression in combatting the climate crisis, a key challenge of our time. It follows the last few joint declarations in focusing on the role on freedom of expression and a free media in supporting key social and human rights goals, with the most recent focusing, respectively, on democracy, gender justice, and politicians and political figures.

The 2024 Joint Declaration highlights the key ways in which freedom of expression is central to efforts to address the myriad challenges posed by the climate crisis, including the threats the latter poses to freedom of expression itself, as well as other human rights”, said Toby Mendel, Executive Director of CLD. “Freedom of expression is, in particular, key both to forging social consensus so as to enable the adoption of needed measures to prevent further climate-driven disasters and to exposing actors which fail to implement and respect those measures.

The Joint Declaration is divided into five separate sections, with the first focusing on the all-important issue of the right to access to information about environmental and climate issues, something that many States and corporate actors have failed to respect. Standards addressed here include the obligation of States not only to disclose but also to collect relevant information, as well as the responsibility of corporations to produce and disclose detailed information on the environmental impact of their operations. Other sections focus on creating an enabling environment for public participation, upholding environmental journalism, the role of freedom of expression in ensuring access to climate justice, and the protection of marginalised groups.

The Joint Declaration is available here.

For further information, please contact:

Toby Mendel
Executive Director
Centre for Law and Democracy
Email: toby@law-democracy.org
+1 902 431-3686
twitter: @law_democracy

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