Latest statistics on Land and Environmental Defenders

Anna Triponel
September 15, 2023
Voice, stakeholders and defenders
Climate crisis

It’s that time of the year again when we get the data related to those on the ground defending their land.

Global Witness has been documenting the threats, violence and killings of land and environmental defenders across the world for the past 11 years. In their words, “The world has changed dramatically since we started documenting these in 2012. But one thing that has not changed is the relentlessness of the killings.” They dedicate their report to all those individuals, communities and organisations that are taking a stand to defend human rights, their land, and our environment. 🌎

We summarise their key takeaways below and you can ask yourself - what is your company doing to ensure that people are not being killed in its value chain?

In this box, I’d like to draw out what didn’t make it into our summary - a highlight of some of the progress highlighted by Global Witness over the past year. Because we all need some positive stories on a Friday… These include:

  • The EU Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive ⚖️
  • The First Escazú Agreement Conference of the Parties (COP Escazú) - the first annual meeting of the Escazú Agreement – the first regional environmental agreement in Latin America and the Caribbean, and the first in the world containing specific provisions on environmental human rights defenders 🔈
  • The world’s first Special Rapporteur on Environmental Defenders, Michel Forst
  • The United Nations’ resolution recognising the right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment as a human right 🌟
  • A landmark loss and damage fund agreed at COP27 - for countries worst-affected by the climate crisis ✨
  • Judicial developments – for instance, the sentencing of illegal loggers for the murder of Ashéninka Indigenous leaders in Peru; the cancellation of permits issued by federal authorities for a port that was opposed by local communities in Mexico; and the revocation of a project licence for fossil-fuel exploration that did not consult local stakeholders in Australia 🌲

Have a good weekend all,