The Right to Be Cold: Examining the Indigenous Peoples’ Rights and Climate Change
AdvisorLucas, Alastair R.
AuthorOgunyemi, Dayo Adeniyi
Committee MemberOshionebo, Evaristus
SubjectThe Right to be Cold
The Arctic Region
Fundamental human rights
The Right to a Healthy Environment
International human rights system
Regional human rights system
Indigenous Peoples’ Rights
Emissions of greenhouse gases
The Kyoto Protocol
The Paris Agreement
The United Nations Human Rights System
The Inter-American Human Rights System
The Inuit Petition
The Athabaskan Petition
The Inuit’s Case
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AbstractThe reality of climate change and its adverse implication on the human and environmental rights of the Inuit is no longer in doubt. The observed impacts of climate change in the Arctic region confirm that the change in climate has violated the fundamental human rights of the Inuit inhabiting the Arctic region, the integrity of the Arctic ecosystem, and also the environmental “right to be cold”. Emissions of greenhouse gases primarily due to human activities have contributed monumentally to climate change, and these emissions have, over the years, been encouraged by the actions or inactions of States. The principle that “where there is a right, there is a remedy” prompts the search for legal remedies within the international human rights system to address the impacts of climate change on the Inuit and the Arctic region. This thesis addresses the legal and regulatory framework that can be adopted to address the impact of climate change on Northern Indigenous peoples. The question of whether current global regimes on climate change provide an effective mechanism for the Peoples of the Arctic to seek redress to defend their culture and way of life is also addressed. This thesis argues that the Inuit may find an effective mechanism to seek redress within the existing United Nations and Inter-American human rights systems.
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