Tuesday, August 29, 2023
U.N. Committee on Rights of the Child Urges Action Against Climate Change, Finding Children Have a Right to Live in a Clean Environment
The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child issued new guidance that calls for governments to take action to protect boys and girls in the face of the deepening climate crisis. General Comment No. 26 marks the first time the Committee has affirmed children’s right to live in a clean, healthy and sustainable environment.
General Comment No. 26, CRC/C/GC26, provides a comprehensive interpretation of State obligations under the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child, which has been ratified by 196 countries. The 1989 treaty outlines children’s rights, including to life, health, clean drinking water, and survival and development. The United States has signed the CRC but it has never ratified it.
A General Comment provides legal guidance on how children's rights are impacted by a specific topic or area of legislation, with the latest addressing environmental rights with a special focus on climate change.
(Adapted from a U.N. Press Release)
A child-friendly version of the report should be available mid-September 2023.