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National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) with a broad mandate to promote and protect human rights are well-positioned to address the urgency of environmental issues. With a growing awareness on the importance of environmental rights, more NHRIs are also including environmental rights activities in their work plans, and building knowledge, skills, and tools related to environmental rights.
NHRIs can engage in environmental rights through several approaches including complaints-handling and investigation, inquiries, awareness, education, research, and policy recommendations. NHRIs can also engage with rights-holders and duty-bearers in relation to environmental rights, support victims and environmental rights defenders, as well as building a strong network of collaboration nationally and internationally to bring attention to environmental issues.

UNEP has partnered with the Asia Pacific Forum of NHRIs (APF), a network of 25 national human rights institutions (NHRIs) across Asia and the Pacific, to develop a new online course on NHRIs and Environmental Rights. The course is designed to support NHRIs to connect their human rights promotion and protection mandates and subsequent activities to environmental rights and to facilitate their alignment with the growing environmental rights jurisprudence.

Participants can complete a quiz on completion of the course to earn a certificate.

An updated version of this course can be accessed here.