Renewed attempt for a Global Pact for the Environment? Common Home of Humanity sends an open letter to all UN ambassadors
CHH is assembling an international coalition of leading Earth System scientists, legal experts, economists, sovereign states, NGOs, local authorities and universities, and proposes the recognition of the Earth System as a Common Heritage of Humankind in international negotiations
"A strong Universal Declaration to introduce the Principle of the Integrity and Unity of the Earth System" in the negotiations of the Global Pact for the Environment promoted by the United Nations General Assembly, "through the legal recognition as a Common Heritage of Humankind", is the proposal presented by the Common Home of Humanity (CHH) in an Open Letter sent on Friday to the 620 ambassadors accredited to the UN in New York, Nairobi (Kenya) and Geneva (Switzerland). The letter from CHH stresses that today it is possible to define how the global environment works within the Earth System "with a high degree of scientific accuracy". Postponing the process of integrating this scientific knowledge into legal instruments "could prove to be fatal, given the urgency of the climate crisis and the pressures the planet is under". As the window of opportunity to prevent irreversible climate change is closing fast and scientists warn that we are near a threshold situation, the Global Pact for the Environment "may be the last opportunity to make a paradigm shift in international law". The interconnections between economy, social justice, climate emergency, biosphere degradation and the Covid-19 pandemic "are becoming more and more evident", highlights the CHH document. Expanding the Global Pact for the Environment negotiation process to encompass all elements of the Earth System "can make this agreement fairer in terms of historical responsibilities, while allowing an easier and clearer integration of the system's bio-geophysical cycles in the functioning of the economy". The CHH emphasizes that the holistic vision proposed allows an approach to the current environmental, social and health crisis, with some possibility of success towards a well-functioning Earth System. "We are today at a historic moment that requires us to go beyond a mere technical codification and systematization of dispersed International Environment Law principles", which marked the first round of negotiations of the Global Pact for the Environment. Restore a well-functioning Earth System Paulo Magalhães, president of CHH, says that "without the recognition of the existence of an intangible common good without borders - the Earth System - it's impossible to recover its well-functioning state and, consequently, to return to a stable and adequate climate to the human needs". Today, "to realize the benefits to maintain and recover the functioning of the Earth System is to realize the benefits in a legal, and therefore economic and governance, vacuum. So "we are compromising ours and the next generations to maintain an economy that is not fit for Humanity, and that values what is not essential to life and does not guarantee our future". The Common Home of Humanity is assembling an international coalition of leading scientists from the Earth System and sustainability, legal experts, economists, sovereign states, NGOs, local authorities, universities, individuals and other partners, with the aim to achieve the recognition of the Earth System as a Common Heritage of Humankind in international negotiations. A global campaign will be launched on September 1 to open a wide debate on the need to define a Global Common without borders - a well-functioning Earth System/Stable climate. The campaign will involve diverse initiatives, including a set of videos on the CHH’s vision and goals and statements by international personalities.