Re: Is climate change a human rights issue?
I mean there’s already, in the context of discussions about health or access to clean water, you know, or people displaced by the wars over natural resources in various countries particularly in Africa . . . Human rights organizations are often dealing with these issues, but they aren’t framing them within the broader lens and the broader understanding of what’s happening to the ecosystem. And they aren’t actively allying themselves with the environmental movement as I think they . . . as I think they must. And I think the environmental movement has something to gain here too, because the environmental movement has been historically been understood, particularly in this country, as the province of a few elite, white men who are focused on the preservation of habitat for the spotted owl, when in fact what we’re talking about is again our survival as a species. Take a look at communities of color throughout the United States who are facing what are now slowly being described as environmental justice threats – toxic waste dumps for example – in their communities. The big players in the environmental movement have been very slow to inch towards those kinds of issues which are exactly the kinds of issues that will enable a much broader base of support and engagement in the movement they are talking about.
Recorded on: 8/13/07
Caldwell worries that the human rights movement isn't in the game.
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