The Right to a Healthy Environment

“Human Rights are indivisible and all depend on a healthy and sustainable environment. It's critical that the General Assembly recognize the Right to a Healthy Environment as a Basic Human Right with the largest possible majority," said David Hales, Co-Chair of Climate Action for the Parliament. "We're calling on the Governments of all Member States to actively support this Resolution."

In observance of World Environment Day 2022, the Parliament of the World’s Religions is honoring our commitment to sustainability by standing with the UN Human Rights Council in calling for the UN General Assembly to adopt the right to a healthy environment as a basic and universal human right. We recognize the interdependence of all human rights and assert that the Right to a Healthy Environment is fundamental to all others. 

It is critical that the General Assembly pass the Right to a Healthy Environment with the largest possible majority. We call upon the Governments of the Member States to actively support the UN Human Rights Council’s Resolution. It will be vital to add your voice on behalf of this universal human right and once it is introduced we will be back in touch with details, key contact information, suggested language for letters and emails, and emerging developments at that time.

The UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. Over the past 20 years, the effort to include The Right to a Healthy Environment among other basic human rights and fundamental freedoms has been growing ever-stronger. Today, the Right to a Healthy Environment is recognized as an essential human right in law or policy by more than 80% of the member states of the United Nations, by several states in the United States, and by more than 1300 civil society organizations around the world.

In October 2021, the UN Human Rights Council adopted Resolution 48/13, declaring the Right to a Healthy Environment to be a basic human right, and calling for the UN General Assembly to pass a formal resolution recognizing it as such. The General Assembly’s vote is expected in the summer or fall of 2022.

Resolution on the Human Right to a Healthy Environment

The following resolutions were approved on May 13, 2022, by the PoWR Board of Trustees to assert that a healthy environment is a human right for today’s world and the generations to come.

The Parliament of the World's Religions recognizes the right to a healthy environment as a basic human right.

The Parliament of the World's Religions calls on the UNGA to recognize the right to a healthy environment as a human right.

The Parliament of the World's Religions calls on all member states of the UN to support recognition of the right to a healthy environment as a human right.

The Parliament of the World's Religions encourages the US Government to recognize the right of a healthy environment as a human right.

Get Involved

Share the Parliament's Announcement with Your Network and Join Global Interfaith Efforts

Spread the Word on Social Media with the Hashtags #WorldEnvironmentDay and #HealthyEnvironment4All