Our Readers' Opinions
December 13, 2016
Issue 2: ‘The right to know’

by The SVG Human Rights


In the previous issue, the Association spoke to the term “Environmental Democracy” or ED, which specifically addresses three basic rights as enshrined in Article 10 of the Rio declaration.

These rights are listed as:

i. The right to freely access information on environmental quality and problems,

ii. The right to participate meaningfully in decision making, and

iii. The right to seek enforcement of environmental laws or compensation for harm.{{more}}

The term Environmental Democracy speaks to:

i. the involvement of ALL persons within a community, country or nation whose daily lives reflect the quality of the environment,

ii. the fact that the environmental issues MUST be addressed by ALL those that are affected by their outcome, not just by Government and industrial sectors,

iii. the principle of equal rights for ALL involved in the environment debate, including public, community groups, advocates, industrial leaders, Workers, Governments, academics and health professionals,

iv. participation in environmental decision making is as important as in education, health care, finance and Government for all those whose daily lives reflect the quality of their environment,

v. a policy of “right to know”; the provision of information to members of the public, so that citizens can become active participants in identifying and resolving issues at both local and national levels is suggested & endorsed,

vi. emphasis such that, just as consumers are demanding knowledge of what is in the food they eat and the medicines they take, so too they HAVE A RIGHT TO KNOW WHAT IS IN THE AIR THEY BREATHE; THE WATER THEY DRINK AND THE LAND ON WHICH THEY LIVE and PLAY,

vii. the demand for communities to be aware of what chemicals are shipped along their roads, placed in landfills, or stored for future use,

viii. recognition for the “Right to Know”, as it will lead ALL nations to a healthier, sustainable environment.