This book focuses on the issues of global environmental injustice and human rights violations and explores the scope and limits of the potential of human rights to influence environmental justice. It offers a multidisciplinary perspective on contemporary development discussions, analysing some of the crucial challenges, contradictions and promises within current environmental and human rights practices in Latin America. The contributors examine how the extraction and exploitation of natural resources and the further commodification of nature have affected local communities in the region and how these policies have impacted on the promotion and protection of human rights as communities struggle to defend their rights and territories. The book analyses the emergence of transnational activism in the context of collective action organised around socio-environmental conflicts, the infringement of basic human rights and the emergence of alternative and sometimes conflicting development models. Furthermore, it critically discusses why governments are often willing to override their commitments to sustainability and human rights to promote their development agenda.
The chapters originally published as a special issue in The International Journal of Human Rights.
1. Contemporary debates on social-environmental conflicts, extractivism and human rights in Latin America
2. ‘ …Beggars sitting on a sack of gold’: Oil exploration in the Ecuadorian Amazon as buen vivir and sustainable development
3. State-led extractivism and the frustration of indigenous self-determined development: lessons from Bolivia
4. Ethnic rights and the dilemma of extractive development in plurinational Bolivia
5. The international human rights discourse as a strategic focus in socio-environmental conflicts: the case of hydro-electric dams in Brazil
6. Extracting justice? Colombia’s commitment to mining and energy as a foundation for peace