"The bottom line is this. Human rights must be at the heart of all climate action - mitigation, adaptation, and addressing loss & damage. This must be recognised as an obligation, not an option."

The Asia-Europe Foundation and its partners are pleased to publish the findings and recommendations of the 21st Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights and Climate Change (ASEMHRS21), held on 16-18 March 2022 in Luxembourg and online. The meeting brought together a diverse group of official government representatives and civil society experts, representing 47 ASEM Partner countries, to discuss the interplay between human rights and climate change, as well as to develop recommendations and facilitate cooperation and peer-learning through the exchange of good practices, innovative ideas, and knowledge in the integration of human rights in climate change-related action.

The publication provides an overview of the key concepts and the current state-of-play on the advances made across Asia and Europe to integrate human rights into climate action. It also makes a number of recommendations to ASEM Partners and other stakeholders as to the steps that they may wish to consider in their efforts to improve the promotion and protection of human rights in the context of climate change. Furthermore, it details the outcomes of the working group discussions during the Seminar, which focused on the following 4 comprehensive thematic areas:

  • Reinforcing socio-ecological resilience of communities through information and public participation (Rapporteur: Sebastian DUYCK, Center for International Environmental Law, CIEL)
  • Promoting the full enjoyment of human rights by all persons affected by climate change (Rapporteur: Dr Stellina JOLLY, South Asian University)
  • Green, equitable and inclusive: Innovative ideas on international cooperation to address the impacts of climate change on human rights (Dr Linda SULISTIAWATI, Asia-Pacific Center for Environmental Law, National University of Singapore)
  • Taking stock of national and international human rights regimes to protect against the consequences of climate change (Dr Annalisa SAVARESI, University of Eastern Finland)

The Seminar was co-organised by the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), the Raoul Wallenberg Institute (nominated by the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs), the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs, the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Peoples' Republic of China and hosted by the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.