Environmental Justice and the work of Environmental Lawyers

Environmental Lawyers Campaign

In order to provide public recognition and support to environmental lawyers at risk, Lawyers for Lawyers has launched a one-year ‘Environmental Lawyers Campaign‘ on 19 May 2022. In recent years, attacks against environmental lawyers have increased significantly. The campaign aims to raise international attention on environmental lawyers who are being intimidated, harassed or are otherwise at risk because of their work and to create more international solidarity and knowledge by sharing ‘success stories’, i.e. successful cases taken up by environmental lawyers.

 

About the Campaign

In recent years, attacks against environmental lawyers have increased significantly. These attacks include acts of intimidation, assault, enforced disappearance, unlawful detention, violations of private and family life, and in the worst cases, even the killing of lawyers.

In order to provide public recognition and support to environmental lawyers at risk, Lawyers for Lawyers has launched a one-year ‘Environmental Lawyers Campaign’ on 19 May 2022. The campaign aims to raise international attention on environmental lawyers who are being intimidated, harassed or are otherwise at risk because of their work. We want to provide these lawyers with moral and practical support through a series of actions, including statements, individual petitions, and submissions. The purpose of this campaign is also to reduce acts of harassment against environmental lawyers by sending the message to national governments that the international community is watching.

Finally, the campaign aims to create more international solidarity and knowledge amongst environmental lawyers by sharing ‘success stories’, i.e. successful cases taken up by environmental lawyers.

Stories of environmental lawyers

The campaign will focus on the work of environmental lawyers from around the globe. Regularly, articles introducing one of the lawyers will be published on L4L’s website and social media. The campaign will also include other activities, including interventions, individual petitions and submissions, and conferences. The campaign will be concluded with the publication of a final report on environmental lawyers, which will be shared with relevant stakeholders. This report will combine all the interviews mentioned above, as well as commentaries on the general situation of environmental lawyers.

Stories, events and other actions

27 januari 2023

Interview Nazeli Vardanyan: “Nothing can stop me as an environmental lawyer, I will fight until justice is done. International solidarity and support will guarantee the safety of environmental lawyers around the world”

Armenia

Illustration: Joost Hölscher The Armenian environmental lawyer, Nazeli Vardanyan, is admirable for her commitment to protecting Armenia’s environment. She is the founder and director of Armenian Forests Environmental NGO, which is committed to afforestation, reforestation, nature protection, engagement of community

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16 januari 2023

Interview Syeda Rizwana Hasan: “Environmental justice is intrinsic to every other human rights issue”

Illustration: Joost Hölscher Syeda Rizwana Hasan is a renowned environmental lawyer from Bangladesh and the chief executive of the Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA). As the only environmental justice organisation in Bangladesh, BELA is involved in advocacy and environmental public

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22 december 2022

Adil Meléndez Marquez: “When starting a legal case, there is no guarantee at all that it will ever be treated, let alone that environmental and human rights violations are actually punished”

Colombia

Illustration: Joost Hölscher Adil Meléndez Márquez, 46 years old and born in San Onofre, department of Sucre, Colombia, lives in the north of Colombia in Cartagena de las Indias. He works as an environmental and human rights lawyer and mainly

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30 november 2022

Muhammad Jamil “the denial and concealment of public information must be ended now”

Indonesia

As a lawyer working for the Mining Advocacy Network (JATAM), Muhammad Jamil seeks to protect the communities that are affected by the mining business by using advocacy and litigation tools to hold corporations that damage the environment accountable. This work

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24 oktober 2022

Gerthie Mayo-Anda: “I had the experience of being red-tagged in the nineties. I was shocked when I learned about this. There even used to be a price on my head.”

Philippines

Illustration: Joost Hölscher Grizelda Mayo-Anda is the co-founder and executive director of the Environmental Legal Assistance Center (ELAC), a Filipino non-government organization committed to helping communities to uphold their constitutional right to a healthful and balanced ecology. She is also

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27 september 2022

Sor.Rattanamanee Polkla: ‘We are lawyers, we are law-users, but we are also law-makers’

Thailand

With more than twenty years of practice in human rights and environmental matters, Thai lawyer Sor.Rattanamanee Polkla is deeply committed to environmental justice. With her organization, the Community Resource Centre Foundation (CRC), she provides legal aid to communities who face

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29 augustus 2022

Fiona Iliff: “It’s very timely to talk about environmental protection in Zimbabwe”

Zimbabwe

Illustration: Joost Hölscher “Zimbabwe has historically been lucky in the way certain environmental areas have been protected. Now, we see the threats against the environment rising and the work of environmental defenders and lawyers becoming riskier”. According to Fiona Iliff,

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27 juli 2022

Charles Hector Fernandez: “Review of environmental legislation is urgently needed”

Malaysia

Malaysian environmental human rights lawyer Charles Hector Fernandez was one of the speakers at the Lawyers for Lawyers seminar on environmental justice and the work of environmental lawyers. Fernandez has been in the news several times in recent years, including

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