A rights-based approach to the environmental issues has been gaining momentum since the United Nations’ Environmental Agency proposed a new rights-based agenda for sustainable development in the document, Transforming our world: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (UN, 2015). Our moral responsibility toward the environment is essential to the project of sustainable development. The Kantian ethical tradition lays the foundations of a rights-based approach to human rights and sustainable development. Human rights are essential to the flourishing of all human beings regardless of their nationality or another status. Linking human rights to environmental justice has been an arduous task, but contemporary environmental ethicists argue that giving a human face to the environment that nurtures and sustains us is a precondition for sustainable development. The concept of sustainability addresses the issue of economic growth at present and how this impacts the future generations. This paper examines the rights-based environmental ethics, which has emerged in the context of a human rights-based approach to human development and forges a link between rights-based ethics and sustainable development that could establish a solid foundation for environmental justice.

Publication timeframe:
2 times per year
Journal Subjects:
Social Sciences, Education, other