Resources

New environmental and social standards at the World Bank and the AIIB

A recent Position paper by the German Institute for Human Rights argues that the newly developed standards of the multilateral Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and of the World Bank fall short in many respects of the human rights commitments that the Federal Government has imposed on itself. If Germany wishes to achieve the objectives it has set for itself, it will have to conduct its own human rights assessment of projects, and close monitoring of project implementation will be equally necessary.

World Bank undermines decades of progress on building protections for the rights of indigenous peoples

On the 4th of August 2016, the Executive Board of the World Bank approved its new safeguard approach, detailed in a text called the ‘Environmental and Social Framework’.

The Environmental and Social Framework (ESF) is intended to contribute to the so-called ‘twin goals’ of the Bank: eliminating extreme poverty and boosting shared prosperity. It defines the approach that the World Bank will take to assess and minimise negative impacts from World Bank investments, and promote social and environmental goods.

World Bank turns its back on pastoral communities

Guest article from Helen Tugendhat in the Bretton Woods Project Observer regarding the World Bank’s decision to grant a waiver of OP4.10 for an agricultural investment project in Tanzania.

Click here to read the article (offsite link)

Comments on the CAO Guidelines for Complainant Protection

Compiled edits and comments from 14 NGOs including Accountability Counsel, Bretton Woods Project, CEE Bankwatch Network, CIEL, Forest Peoples Programme, Frontline Defenders, Human Rights Watch, International Accountability Project, LSD, MiningWatch Canada, OEARSE, Protection International, Social Justice Connection, and SOMO have been sent to the World Bank's Office of the Compliance Advisor Ombudsman (CAO).

Human rights experts set the record straight for the World Bank

Indigenous rights experts have written to the World Bank President and Executive Board to underscore the importance of the World Bank adopting a standard of free, prior and informed consent for indigenous peoples potentially affected by development initiatives funded by the Bank. In the letter, the experts point out that the existing standard of Broad Community Support used by the Bank has failed to improve outcomes for development initiatives, and is a standard that is implemented ineffectively and inconsistently across the Bank’s portfolio. 

Public letter to the World Bank from UN Special Mandate holders

The holders of the UN Human Rights Council Special Mandates related to the rights of indigenous peoples have written to the President of the World Bank to reiterate their concerns about the use of the ill-defined term ‘broad community support’ in place of international standards requiring consent from indigenous peoples prior to projects that impact on their lands, lives, identities and resources.

Securing Forest Peoples’ Rights and Tackling Deforestation in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Deforestation and forest degradation have increased in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), despite the government’s commitment to safeguard its forests.

Illegal logging, unsustainable mining, commercial agriculture, and urban demand for fuelwood represent only some of the major long-term threats to the forests. By contrast, the traditional livelihood strategies of indigenous and local communities show a capacity to coexist with forests sustainably.

Sécuriser les droits des peuples forestiers et combattre la déforestation en République démocratique du Congo

La déforestation et la dégradation des forêts ont augmenté en République démocratique du Congo (RDC) malgré l’engagement du gouvernement de protéger ses forêts. Les activités commerciales d’envergure industrielle constituent d’importantes menaces directes à long terme sur les forêts. En revanche, les strategies et modes de subsistance traditionnelles des communautés autochtones et locales montrent qu’elles peuvent coexister durablement avec les forêts.

Secure territorial rights of indigenous peoples and traditional knowledge must be central to post-conflict initiatives to save the Colombian Amazon and achieve sustainable development

Bogotá, April 25: A new report “Deforestation and indigenous peoples rights in the Colombian Amazon” co-published by social justice and environmental NGO DEDISE and Forest Peoples Programme (FPP) underlines the critical role of secure land and territorial rights and traditional knowledge in sustaining one of the most culturally and biologically diverse forests on the planet.

El Asegurar los derechos territoriales y el conocimiento tradicional de los pueblos indígenas son fundamentales para las iniciativas post conflicto destinadas a salvar la Amazonía colombiana y lograr un desarrollo sostenible

Bogotá, abril 25, 2016: Un nuevo informe titulado “Deforestación, políticas nacionales y derechos de los pueblos indígenas en la Amazonía colombiana”, co-publicado por la ONG de justicia social y ambiental DEDISE y el Forest Peoples Programme (FPP), resalta el papel crítico que juegan los derechos a la tierra y territoriales seguros y el conocimiento tradicional en el mantenimiento de uno de los bosques con mayor diversidad cultural y biológica que existe en el planeta.

Comments on Overarching Human Rights Provisions in the World Bank’s Environmental and Social Framework

The Coalition for Human Rights in Development submitted recommendations this week urging the World Bank to amend its proposed Environmental and Social Framework to meaningfully address human rights. The submission addresses arguments that have been put forward against embracing human rights and provides concrete recommendations for strengthening the draft framework.Read more here.

NGOs call for FLEGT Action Plan to be strengthened

In this briefing, UK and European NGOs call on the EU to maintain, upgrade and strengthen its FLEGT programme. Key recommendations include the need to take specific measures to ensure that FLEGT in general, and VPAs and timber legality assurance systems specifically, include language on compliance with international human rights law as an essential element of “legality” in timber supply chains.

FPIC not FPICon: when support is not enough

FPP has released this briefing note reviewing the serious implementation challenges that the World Bank has faced in trying to meet its unique standard of ‘broad community support’ and argues for the adoption of the internationally recognised standard of free, prior and informed consent, now widely adopted by private and public sector financial institutions including by the International Finance Corporation (part of the World Bank Group).

Continuing issues with the World Bank ESF

FPP’s formal submission to the third phase of the consultations for the World Bank Safeguard Review highlight continuing concerns with adequately addressing implementation challenges, overall weakening of the ESF through transfer of responsibilities to borrowers, ambiguity about the impact on the Inspection Panel’s ability to fulfil its mandate and inadequate definition of free, prior and informed consent.