Escazú Regional Agreement

Escazú Regional Agreement

A major development in Latin America related to the right to a healthy environment is the Escazú Regional Agreement on Access to Information, Public Participation and Justice in Environmental Matters in Latin America and the Caribbean which entered into force on 22 April 2021.

  • It is the first regional environmental treaty of Latin America and the Caribbean.
  • It recognises the rights of present and future generations to live in a healthy environment.
  • It refers specifically to NHRIs and requires State Parties to “develop and strengthen environmental law and access rights awareness-raising and capacity-building programmes for … national human rights institutions”. 
  • It is the world’s first treaty to include protections for environmental human rights defenders.
"NHRIs were key indeed. Particularly alliances of NHRIs were quite active in the discussions, some were part of national delegations, others participated in an expert capacity. Their role was recognized in the text of the agreement. For example, as possible independent oversight mechanisms under access to information." 
David Barrio Lamarche, United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean

How did we do?

The Human Rights to Healthy Environment in Southeast Asia: National Human Rights Institutions