The HRC decision overall does not take the inter-dependability of human rights into consideration, while holding that one right is violated and other is not.
Chhaya Bhardwaj, Associate Professor, Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat, Haryana, India.
The author critically analyses the decision of the Human Rights Committee (HRC) in Daniel Billy et al. v. Australia and argues that this decision leaves several gaps in its interpretation and application of ‘right to life’ and rights of children in a climate change case.
This is the second decision in which the HRC holds that climate change, sea-level rise, coastal erosion etc. is likely to negatively impact right to life of people residing in affected coastal regions in the next 10–15 years, preventing the HRC to hold that climate change or sea-level rise is an ‘imminent’ or ‘foreseeable’ threat to the right to life of people.
For the rights of children, he HRC rules that right to culture was impaired, specifically because the islanders ability to disseminate their culture to future generations was impaired. While this rationale was used to hold ‘right to culture’ violations, this rationale was not applied in the context of ‘rights of children’. The HRC decision overall does not take the inter-dependability of human rights into consideration, while holding that one right is violated and other is not.
Published in: Environmental Law Review
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