Reflecting on the right to development from the perspective of global environmental change and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

Scholz, Imme
Externe Publikationen (2020)

in: Markus Kaltenborn / Markus Krajewski / Heike Kuhn (eds.), Sustainable development goals and human rights, Cham, Switzerland: Springer Nature, 191-206 (Open Access)

ISBN: 978-3-030-30468-3
DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-30469-0
Volltext/Document

The conceptual and legal relationship between human rights, human development and environmental protection is not a straightforward one. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Climate Agreement adopted in 2015 link improvements in human development to human rights and to mitigating global changes in climate and the environment. The UN Declaration on the Right to Development (UNDRTD) adopted in 1986, however, does not include any explicit obligation to protect the natural environment, and to contribute to the provision of global environmental goods. The article explains how global environmental change is defined, how it is linked with human development and how it manifests itself. Then, the article takes a closer look at the UNDRTD and how it could be linked with global environmental change. Finally, the article proposes two concepts that could help to situate the UNDRTD within the challenges of the twenty-first century as exemplified in the 2030 Agenda. First, humanity should be introduced as a third category of right-holders (in addition to individuals and groups). This would include future generations more explicitly than now and put the relationships between species or life-forms as interdependent parts of the web of life into focus. Second, therefore, the rights of life forms should be established to transcend the conceptual boundaries of human rights and develop norms that govern the interdependencies between humans as well as plants and animals in the broadest sense.

About the author

Scholz, Imme

Sociologist

Scholz

Further experts

Aleksandrova, Mariya

Climate risk governance 

Bauer, Steffen

Political scientist 

Baumann, Max-Otto

Political Scientist 

Brandi, Clara

Economist and Political Scientist 

Chan, Sander

Enviroment Policy 

Fuhrmann, Hanna

Economist 

Götze, Jacqueline

Political Scientist 

Hackenesch, Christine

Political Scientist 

Hilbrich, Sören

Economist 

Hägele, Ramona

Political Scientist 

Iacobuta, Gabriela

Environmental Researcher 

Janus, Heiner

Political Scientist 

Keijzer, Niels

Social Scientist 

Kloke-Lesch, Adolf

Urban and regional planner 

Koch, Svea

Social Scientist 

Kuhn, Sascha

Social Psychologist 

Laudage, Sabine

Economist 

Malerba, Daniele

Economist 

Mathis, Okka Lou

Political Scientist 

Never, Babette

Political Scientist 

Pegels, Anna

Economist 

Richerzhagen, Carmen

Agricultural and Environmental Economist 

Rodríguez de Francisco, Jean Carlo

Ecological Economist 

Schwachula, Anna

Sociologist 

Srigiri, Srinivasa Reddy

Agricultural Economist 

Sturm, Janina

Economist and political scientist 

Vogel, Johanna

International Cultural Economist 

Wehrmann, Dorothea

Sociologist 

Weinlich, Silke

Political Scientist