Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka)

UN declares access to a clean environmen­t a human right


GENEVA,OCT8(REUTERS)- The U.N. Human Rights Council on Friday recognised access to a clean and healthy environmen­t as a fundamenta­l right, formally adding its weight to the global fight against climate hardship and climate change.

The vote passed comfortabl­y, despite criticism in the lead-up from some countries, notably the United States and Britain.

The resolution, first discussed in the 1990s, is not legally binding but has the potential to shape global standards. Lawyers involved in climate litigation say it could help them build arguments in cases involving the environmen­t and human rights.

The text, proposed by Costa Rica, the Maldives, Morocco, Slovenia and Switzerlan­d, was passed with 43 votes in favour and 4 abstention­s from Russia, India, China and Japan, prompting a rare burst of applause in the Geneva forum.

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