TODAY -

Climate justice is integral to development justice

Shobha Shukla *



Climate justice is integral to development justice, as it is essential for building a brave feminist future sans power and wealth inequalities. This is the dream of feminists in the Asia Pacific region, including Misun Woo, who recently took over charge as the Regional Coordinator for APWLD (Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development).

A law graduate from New York University School of Law, Misun Woo, is deeply committed to a feminist movement building to dismantle the current patriarchal structures and systems that are violating women’s human rights, deepening inequalities and fuelling conflicts.

Misun was in conversation with CNS (Citizen News Service) on the sidelines of APFSD (Asia Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development) 2018, which was held in Bangkok, Thailand. Here are some of her insights on environmental and climate justice that is integral to ending resource and wealth inequalities between men and women, between rich and poor and between countries.

Right to a healthy and safe environment

Misun Woo: The right to a safe and healthy environment is increasingly being recognised as one of the core human rights. Climate change is a result of very deliberate political and economic decisions made by governments together with large corporations. Any form of climate change and/or environmental disaster manifests itself in intersecting forms of oppression impacting the lives and livelihood of women in different locations, of different religions and also those with different identities, in various ways.

Climate change and environment is a feminist issue and we have many evidences that women are affected more by climate change and natural disasters, with little recourse to remedies that can enable them to be resilient to their impacts. There are documented findings that after a natural disaster (like Typhoon Yolanda that struck Philippines a few years back), hits a community, women are forced to either migrate or are trafficked to become sex workers and also face different forms of gender based violence. Also in the event of an environmental crisis, women are more likely to die than men do as they have less access to remedies and justice.

On women environmental defenders

Misun Woo: As climate/environment issues are feminist issues and hence the core part of women’s human rights, there is an intrinsic overlap between women human rights defenders and environmental defenders. Both would have a very specific target because of their identity as women. So while women human rights defenders are also environmental defenders, and vice versa, there should be a different approach to support their work and protect them.

Women in the Asia Pacific region are fighting for climate justice and working to defend their land and natural resources to be able to control and manage them. A large number of these women subsist as farmers and live in rural areas, where their lives are very deeply connected to how the land and natural resources are managed.

This is also true of indigenous women. While governments are expected to protect people’s human rights, they are actually violating them, especially their development rights, by taking their businesses away from them. That in itself reveals the current global power structure.

Governments are taking the land away from people and giving it to large multinational corporations, and also to the military for use in times of conflict. Nowadays there are more coordinated efforts/ interlinkages of governments and corporations to follow a neoliberal agenda and use of force to just make the power to stay in a few hands.

It is natural that, in the absence of any other support, people are forced to organise themselves as movements to defend their rights. Governments feel challenged by the activism and work of women human rights and environmental defenders, because they are at the core of addressing the structural systems that prevent development justice, which has environmental justice as one of its five pillars.

While both men and women human rights defenders are being targeted, women are exposed to various types of threats. One of the tactics used by the governments is to attack the women members, especially their children. Moreover, women are more exposed to gender based violence.

On sustainable and resilient societies

Misun Woo: There is a growing uncomfortable feeling amongst women constituencies around the word ‘resilience' - a word that has been manipulated and exploited by governments to force people to actually endure their hardships and find solutions themselves, without highlighting the role and obligations of the state as a duty bearer. We refuse to be resilient and absorb all the shocks - economic shocks, climate shocks, political shocks.

The people who cause those problems should take responsibility. For me, resilient societies are those where people are able to articulate their demands and their vision for a dignified life, and where there are clear mechanisms/frameworks in place that when those collective visions are violated then who should be held accountable.

A sustainable society is where the power, wealth and resources are distributed in a very equitable and sustainable way. To tackle the root causes of existing inequalities between and within countries and people. Women have always played a very integral role in society.

One of the key values that women have brought in is the power of movements that women have organised themselves- by collectively shaping the visions and demands of people from different backgrounds, driven by people’s rights and human rights based principles. Women can chart out the kind of future we want.

On the importance of regional UN processes

Misun Woo: Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are important as they universally apply to all the member states, and also because global development policies seem to generate more political interest (although implementation wise we are not very sure) than human rights treaties. But there is a clear disconnect between the SDGs commitments and the existing human rights obligations - especially around women’s human, economic, social and cultural rights.

So I think that (i) when we are engaging with our governments at the national, regional or global level, we have to remind them that the SDGs are the lowest common denominator and they attest to other human rights mechanisms, and (ii) we, as civil society organisations, have to ensure that there is a clearer link between regional and global processes, also that civil society’s participation as equal partners is institutionalised.

Note: APFSD 2108, was held in Bangkok in March 2018, where over 100 CSOs gathered under the umbrella of AP-RCEM (Asia Pacific Regional CSO Engagement Mechanism), to review the cluster of SDGs to be discussed later in July 2018 at the high-level political forum (HLPF) in New York.


* Shobha Shukla wrote this article for e-pao.net
Shobha Shukla is the Managing Editor, CNS (Citizen News Service) and has written extensively for gender justice, health and human rights over the decades. Follow her on Twitter @Shobha1Shukla, @CNS_health or visit www.citizen-news.org
This article was webcasted on June 13 , 2018.



* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.




LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • Rajkumari Muktasana - Artiste : Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 29 May : Govt of Manipur
  • A novitiating criminal lawyer's reflections
  • Childline Thoubal, frontlines during lockdown
  • Webinar on 'Dynamics of Online Education'
  • Share market as career options
  • The Beauty of It :: Poem
  • Countdown to May 31
  • Contemplating on the impending changes
  • Train @Jiri [May 28] #1 : Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 28 May : Govt of Manipur
  • 'Fisabishiing Thabak Suhanbiyu'
  • Thoughts random: In times of coronavirus - V
  • Appeal to CM from Students in Delhi
  • Deadly Darkness :: Poem
  • 'Avoid stigmatization against Returnees'
  • Martin Ennals Award 2021 : Nominations
  • Make information come more freely
  • Need for greater aggression & sterner actions
  • Stuctures @ Willong Khullen, Maram : Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 27 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Discussion with tribal leader- 27 May : Gallery
  • A walk to remember :: Poem
  • School at Senapati as quarantine center
  • Delhi Declaration- environmental conservation
  • Letter to Governor on Lhukhosei Zou's case
  • Increase of COVID-19 +ve cases in Nagaland
  • Dialogue: Inequality-Bridging the Divide
  • Learning to live with COVID-19
  • I Rise :: Film Synopsis & Biography
  • Covid-19 Status 26 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Legal framework behind Lockdown, Curfew
  • Furnishing of Fees Info from Private School
  • Curfew Violators - 26 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Continuing woes of people in Manipur
  • Increasing positive cases of COVID-19
  • Measures @ Imphal Airport - 25 May : Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 25 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Modified SOP for Air Traveller- 25 May : GOM
  • Haoginlun, Chingdakoiba: eMing
  • Covid-19 : Impact in Manipur :: News Timeline
  • Drug Rehabilitation Centre in Manipur
  • COVID-19 & ecology, environment in Manipur
  • Vegetable flood at Wabagai during lock down
  • Technology to the rescue
  • M.K Binodini Devi's Sense of Beauty
  • Covid-19 Status 24 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Monkeys seen on the streets of Imphal
  • Id-Ul-Fitr :: Book
  • Make in Manipur, try Yu
  • SOP for Air Traveller- 24 May : Manipur Govt
  • Economic Relief package for small business
  • Manipur Muslims stranded in Gujarat
  • Bracing up for arrival by air
  • Motsillaba Mingsel : Film Synopsis
  • Covid-19 Status 23 May : Govt of Manipur
  • COVID-19 emergency response- observation
  • Ugly side of lockdown during COVID-19
  • International Day of Biodiversity 2020
  • Requests for Orders on 7th UGC Pay
  • Mother - A Deity :: Poem
  • Preparing for the inevitable change
  • Phisakol #3 :: eRang
  • Covid-19 Status 22 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Two students at 'Model Conference of Parties'
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • It's a cup of my Tea - International Tea Day
  • Govts' accountability in response to COVID-19
  • Online Faculty Development Program at RGU
  • Verse for Schoolchildren :: Poem
  • Growing number of positive cases
  • Tending to the trivialities in time
  • International Day for Biological Diversity
  • Covid-19 Status 21 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Issues of Manipuri nurses in Kolkata
  • Item Distribution to Quarantine centres
  • Orders/Memo - 21 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Workshop On Writing Research Paper
  • Appeal to all the Stranded Denizens
  • 'Reverify the lists of evacuees'
  • Helpline for Women Entrepreneurs of NE
  • Focus on quarantine centres
  • Counting on our collective responsibilities
  • Art has no gender & neither do Artists
  • Covid-19 Status 20 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Medical assistance to journalist awarded
  • 13th Manipur State Film Awards, 2020
  • Power loom weave intricately designed cloth
  • Dilemma after High School
  • Quarantine Centre- Negligence at Saitu, Kpi
  • 'This is no time to politicize the pandemic'
  • Highest spike on single day with 16
  • Foresight & vision - need of the hour
  • Distribution for Manipuri @ Blore: Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 19 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Hand sanitizer to Journalists : Gallery
  • Manipur Migrants in Bengaluru's Safety Net
  • Orders/Memo [19 May] : Govt of Manipur
  • A Forbidden Love : Poem
  • Social advocacy as career choice
  • Total curfew : Confusing the people
  • Preparing for the long haul
  • Tungjoi Glory Day #2 : Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 18 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Gandhi's talisman.. to reform public health
  • A view of the Thames
  • COVID-19 knocks our education system
  • Clarification from Mumbai Returnee [May 18]
  • Nagaland : Demand for Special Trains
  • Beating China on the tally
  • Turning threat into opportunity
  • How Lockdown impact Textile Industry
  • Covid-19 Status 17 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Fight COVID-19 !! :: Poem
  • Thoughts random: In times of coronavirus- IV
  • Webinar series with a focus on COVID-19
  • COVID-19 gi matangda suggestion khara
  • Urges to impose curfew on Eid-ul-Fitr
  • Hundreds and hundreds returning
  • Emotional reverberations during COVID-19
  • Covid-19 Status 16 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Ningombam Sunibala : NE Success Stories
  • Home Sweet Home vis-a-vis Lockdown Exodus
  • Issue of Curfew Pass [May 16]
  • e-Videos Learning should be made in English
  • The Old Man in the Evening :: Poem
  • The silver lining
  • Kabui Lai of Kakching
  • Covid-19 Status 15 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Have you ever sanitize your mind ?
  • Challenges in the new normal
  • We Real Brave :: Poem
  • Know our health care system
  • How about the 14 days quarantine ?
  • Psychological side of COVID-19 epidemic
  • Associates & Junior Associates at MaolKeki
  • Know our health care system & shortcomings
  • Quarantine Centre @Thangmeiband: Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 14 May : Govt of Manipur
  • The Princess & The Political Agent : Preview
  • Self-Sufficiency: A Shibboleth ?
  • Running business not just to survive lockdown
  • A Symphony on Spring :: Poem
  • 'No concrete roadmap by Nagaland govt'
  • Coronavirus, lockdown, stranded people
  • Unattended struggle of Phige Weavers
  • Covid-19 Status 13 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Featured Front Page Photo 2020 #2: Gallery
  • Relief exchange- Moidangpok & Keikao, Tml
  • Unheeded Balance :: Poem
  • Arsenal's new home
  • Getting ready for lockdown 4.0
  • Preparing for the shifting battle line
  • Barak River, Tamenglong #1 :: Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 12 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Bishnupur Dist. Orders / Memo [May 12]
  • Vaccination of cattle at Khumbong
  • Bus for Stranded Manipuris in Guwahati
  • Startups in the time of corona crisis
  • Naming children after pandemic
  • Growing number of infected
  • Adversity to opportunity
  • The Princess & the Political Agent : eBook
  • Covid-19 Status 11 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Huishu village, Chingai, Ukhrul Dist. : Gallery
  • Nurse unite to demand universal public health
  • Transport of stranded students from Shillong
  • Of kombirei and daffodil
  • Impact of lockdown on economy of Manipur
  • Opening the doors amid the lockdown
  • Preparing for the inevitable future
  • Naga Peace Process :: News Timeline
  • Quarantine Centre @Kwakeithel : Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 10 May : Govt of Manipur
  • SOP : Returning by Train to Manipur
  • Foreign Nationals stranded in Northeast
  • The International Mother's Day 2020
  • Lonely Days at Home :: Poem
  • Keep helping the poor amid COVID-19
  • From chinky to coronavirus
  • Rajkumari Muktasana : Dance Artiste
  • Covid-19 Status 09 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Impact on children during lockdown
  • Movement Pass Register - Resident Govt
  • Mother, The Giver ! :: Poem
  • Improving English during lockdown
  • Nagaland Govt to bring back stranded citizen
  • Road to unity
  • Paoki Fest @ Purul, Senapati: Gallery
  • Taja mgidi ya_Aodbr :: Seireng
  • A view on soccer training
  • Covid-19 Status 08 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Wetlands of Manipur : Documentary Film
  • Contribution of AR in Empowerment of women
  • Understanding stranded persons
  • nuHsi K_waHceY :: Seireng
  • Covid-19 Status 07 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Vagabond :: Poem
  • Best materials for homemade mask
  • E-Learning during COVID-19 Lockdown
  • Our careers and COVID-19
  • Need to expand commercial centres
  • Normalizing the act of humanism
  • Landscape to Dzukou Valley #4 : Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 06 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Our part in the coronavirus lockdown
  • Quick nutrition garden during COVID-19
  • Lockdown Order from 6 May: Manipur Govt
  • Relief material to families at Keibul Lamjao
  • What to foresee from a Free Haircut ?
  • May 6, 2020 : Yet another day of drama
  • For Manipur, it is not COVID-19 alone
  • Luira Phanit @Kamjong #2 : Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 05 May : Govt of Manipur
  • San Marino is now World's Highest Infection
  • Women bear brunt of humanitarian disasters
  • Covid-19 Lockdown Violators - 05 May
  • Lockdown and livelihood
  • Singlup's response to COVID-19 relief
  • No lessons learnt from lockdown ?
  • Embracing the new Normal
  • Distribution @Benguluru -2 May : Gallery
  • Covid-19 Status 04 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Manipur Looks Flat - Hingminnasi Eikhoi
  • Conflicts between Individualism & Collectivism
  • Thoughts random: In times of coronavirus - III
  • Taking care of your hands during lockdown
  • SOP for Stranded Manipuri
  • Categorise the stranded folks
  • Helping a lame dog over a stile
  • MK Binodini Book Reading : Gallery
  • Europe zooms MK Binodini Devi's Literature
  • COVID-19 outbreak: Safety at work is must
  • The Finest Hour :: Poem
  • 27th Anniv of Pangal's Black Day
  • Tribal way of fortification against Covid-19
  • Manipur officially in Green Zone
  • Why not carve out a future in Chakhao #2
  • Covid-19 Status 02 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Advisory for Farmers during Lockdown period
  • Apply for Medical Financial Assistance
  • Drug users community response in COVID-19
  • L Shamungou : Listed in 25 best photos
  • A way to make Manipur the best
  • Bangladeshki Sana Tampha #2 :: eRang
  • Covid-19 Status 01 May : Govt of Manipur
  • Thang Ta - Sangai Fest 2018 #2 : Gallery
  • May Calendar for Year 2020 : Tools
  • Pallel & Kakching Keithel : Gallery
  • Tangkhul Forum vegetable for valley: Gallery
  • Items distributed to Tarao -Apr 23 #2: Gallery
  • Covid-19: Impact in Manipur :: Photos/News..
  • Language affinity betn Meiteis & Tangkhuls
  • Helpline Number for Students/ people from NE
  • SPONSORED ADS