Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General
Geneva, Switzerland
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Human Rights Council - 19th Regular Session

Item 3
Australian statement on the High Commissioner’s Analytical study on the

 relationship between human rights and the environment

5 March 2012

Australia recognises the significant threat to human rights posed by environmental degradation and climate change and welcomes the High Commissioner’s analytical study on the relationship between human rights and the environment.

Australia particularly welcomes the acknowledgement, through this study and through the Human Rights Council resolution 16/11 on this topic, that environmental damage is felt most acutely by those persons already in vulnerable situations, and whose capacity to adapt is the most economically constrained. Australia has invested over half of its $599 million climate change fast-start finance to meet high priority adaptation needs in developing countries, including the poorest and most vulnerable. At least 25% of our fast-start funding is directed towards Small Island Developing States and 25% to Least Developed Countries.

Australia supports the High Commissioner’s call for further and more specific studies on the key issues and gaps in the relationship between human rights the environment.