NYLPI Observes International Human Rights Day

December 10, 2022

Climate and Energy Justice, Environmental Justice, Health Justice, News, PEAK Coalition

Text reads: International Human Rights Day. December 10.

This year’s 27th annual Conference of the Parties (COP 27) global climate change convening took place in Sharm El Sheik, Egypt and was attended by NYLPI’s Environmental Justice Director, Anthony Rogers-Wright

The conference, which attracted over 50,000 people from around the world, came at a time when it’s reported that humanity has less than a decade to reduce global emissions. it was fitting that COP 27 took place on the African continent, the region of the world responsible for the least emissions in the world yet experiencing some of the most disproportionate impacts of climate change, which has already reduced the continent’s GDP by an estimated 15% every year. 

That’s why one of COP 27’s major themes was “Loss and Damage,” the idea that wealthier nations who have emitted the most greenhouse gasses should compensate and invest in developing nations who are absorbing the worst effects of those emissions.

Tomorrow, NYLPI observes the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Here in New York, Black, Indigenous, and other people of color and low wealth New Yorkers who have little hand in exacerbating the climate crisis are experiencing the worst of its impacts. Superstorm Sandy, Hurricane Irene, and, most recently, Hurricane Ida all have one thing in common: they disproportionately impacted the lives of communities of color and low-income New Yorkers.  Moreover, the COVID pandemic continues to expose structural inequalities that have diminished the quality of life for non-white New Yorkers and their communities for years and decades – from redlining to the intentional distribution of polluting facilities and hazardous waste facilities, the fight for mutual justice for all New Yorkers continues.    

For these reasons and more, NYLPI emphatically declares that environmental justice is inexorably a human rights issue.    

The lifeblood of our environmental justice work is a synergy of the incredible organizing and advocacy of our community partners, the work of our dedicated and diligent staff, and, in no uncertain terms, financial support from concerned residents like yourself who understand that human rights are an inextricable component of the climate and environmental justice equation.    

That’s why our EJ team works with communities, partner organizations, and lawmakers to uphold the directives of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner on Human Rights. Whether it’s advancing litigation to prevent waste pollution in Jamaica Bay, advocating for New York’s Human Rights Amendment to serve impacted EJ communities, closing down fossil-fuel Peaker Plants, and more – all our work is exercised through a lens of human rights.

As we collectively observe International Human Rights Day, we hope we can count on your continued support so that we can collectively advance human rights through our continued pursuit of mutual environmental justice for all New Yorkers.  

Make a gift now. 

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