What is climate justice?

Climate change will affect people and places in different ways.
This will bring about inequalities between and within countries and communities, and could lead to conflict between current and future generations. Climate change will therefore lead to injustice.
We have an opportunity now to do something about this and YOU can be a change maker – personally, locally, nationally, and globally.

Climate Justice recognises that those who are least responsible for climate change suffer its gravest consequences.

This injustice is intensified by the fact that the causes of climate change are related to lifestyles of overconsumption in richer countries. Vulnerable people whose rights to food, shelter, water and life are already precarious, are being further threatened. Source: Trocaire

Climate change affects people differently, depending on the following factors:

Location | Income | Gender | Class | Race | Age | Level of education

Climate Justice looks at the climate crisis through an equality and human rights lens. Climate Change is not just an environmental issue, it is also a justice issue.

For Mary Robinson,

Climate Justice links human rights and development to achieve a human-centred approach, safeguarding the rights of the most vulnerable people and sharing the burdens and benefits of climate change and its impacts equitably and fairly.

Mary Robinson Foundation, as quoted in Geography of Climate Justice.

Climate Justice is informed by science, and responds to science recognising that we need to take care of the world’s resources for current and future generations.

Key Principles of Climate Justice (Mary Robinson Foundation) are:

  • Respect and Protect Human Rights
  • Support the Right to Development
  • Share Benefits and Burdens Equitably
  • Ensure that decisions on Climate Change are participatory, transparent and accountable
  • Highlight gender equality and equity
  • Harness the transformative power of education for climate stewardship
  • Use effective partnerships to secure climate justice

These principles are rooted in the frameworks of international and regional human rights law and do not require the breaking of any new ground on the part of those who ought, in the name of climate justice, to be willing to take them on.

The Climate Revolution is here!

Young people across the planet have become instrumental in taking action against Climate Change and for Climate Justice.

Young people want progress and want a say on how we treat our environment, to protect the future of the planet and ultimately the human race itself.

It is important to recognise that in this Climate Emergency (which Ireland declared in May 2019), we take into consideration and act on what is happening around us but also what is happening in developing nations – countries in the ‘global south’ who find themselves in the most vulnerable positions caught up in systems and conditions and issues not of their making against which they have little or no power to change.

This resource explores the issue of Climate Change and the Sustainable Development Goals.

It is designed for Youth Workers, Youth Sector educators, Development Education practitioners, trainers, climate activists, changemakers of all shapes and sizes and particularly supports the current generation of young people.