Campaigners hope the threat of being hauled before the court scares politicians and executives into changing their behaviour.
International lawyers, environmentalists and a growing number of world leaders say “ecocide”—widespread destruction of the environment—would serve as a “moral red line” for the planet.
WAMU 88.5 — A Crime With No Name: The International Definition Of ‘Ecocide’.Philippe Sands interview.
A growing movement wants destruction of the environment to be treated like genocide and crimes against humanity.
Lawyers Are Working to Put ‘Ecocide’ on a Par with War Crimes. Could an International Law Hold Major Polluters to Account?
How a proposed amendment to international human rights law could prohibit the systematic destruction of nature. “Nothing concentrates the mind better than the prospect of an individual being found criminally liable” – Philippe Sands
Official side event of the 19th Session of the Assembly of States Parties (ASP) to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC), December 2020. Kindly hosted by the Republic of Vanuatu in association with the Stop Ecocide Foundation and Institute for Environmental Security.
“A CEO doesn’t want to be seen in the same bracket as a war criminal,” says Jojo Mehta of the Stop Ecocide campaign. This month a panel of top international and environmental lawyers from around the world begin drafting a legal definition of ecocide, with the goal of having it included on the statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) at The Hague in the coming years.
A panel of leading lawyers has been set up to draft a legal definition of ’ecocide’ as a potential international crime that could sit alongside war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity. The concept would criminalise mass damage and destruction of the world’s ecosystems and could ultimately see individuals prosecuted before the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague.
International lawyers are drafting plans for a legally enforceable crime of ecocide – criminalising destruction of the world’s ecosystems – that is already attracting support from European countries and island nations at risk from rising sea levels. The aim is to draw up a legal definition of “ecocide” that would complement other existing international offences such as crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide.
He was recently appointed co-chair of a panel convened by the Stop Ecocide Foundation to draft a legal definition of “ecocide” as a potential international crime. “The function of law, in part, is to change consciousness, and the absence of any international crime concerning massive damage to the environment basically sends a signal that it’s OK to do that,” says Sands. “I have kids and I want to do my bit for future generations.”
From the Pope to Greta Thunberg, there are growing calls for the crime of “ecocide” to be recognised in international criminal law – but could such a law ever work? Co-founder Jojo Mehta is interviewed by Sophie Yeo.
Ecocide Law – Protecting the future of life on Earth’ Margaret Rose-Goddard of Future Law Institute speaks with Kate Mackintosh from Promise Institute & Jojo Mehta