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UK- Environment

The UK 2013 NAP

The UK 2013 NAP does not make an explicit reference to Environment and Climate Change.

The UK 2016 Updated NAP

2. The State Duty to Protect Human Rights

The existing UK legal and policy framework

Government commitments [page 11]

(viii) Continue to work through our embassies and high commissions to support human rights defenders working on issues related to business and human rights in line with EU Guidelines on human rights defenders.

4. Access to remedy for human right abuses resulting from business activity

Government commitments

Case study- Supporting human rights defenders in Colombia, Mexico and Brazil [page 22]

The UK supported International Service for Human Rights to deliver an intensive training and advocacy programme for human rights defenders working on issues relating to business and human rights in Colombia, Mexico and Brazil. ISHR also created a toolkit to equip human rights defenders to engage with and influence business and supported an advocacy mission to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights for the purpose of briefing diplomats and decisionmakers on the situation of human rights defenders working on issues of business and human rights in Brazil, Colombia and Mexico and obtaining recommendations in that regard.

Case study from NCP – World Wildlife Fund (WWF) & SOCO International Plc, June 2014 [page 23]

WWF’s complaint alleged that SOCO’s oil exploration activities in Virunga National Park (Democratic Republic of Congo – DRC) did not contribute to sustainable development and that this conduct was prohibited under existing International agreements and DRC law. The activities specifically risked adverse impacts on the local communities, the environment and wildlife. This case had aroused considerable International media attention.

The UK NCP accepted the complaint and asked both parties to take part in professional external mediation in London, which resulted in an agreed joint statement.

As part of the statement, SOCO agreed that they will not undertake or commission any exploratory or other drilling within Virunga National Park unless UNESCO and the DRC government agree that such activities are not incompatible with its World Heritage status.

They also stated that “when we undertake human rights due diligence, the processes we adopt will be in full compliance with international norms and standards and industry best practice, including appropriate levels of community consultation and engagement on the basis of publicly available documents.” The full joint statement and NCP Final assessment published in June 2014 can be seen at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/330392/bis14-967-uk-ncp-final-statement-following-agreement-reached-in-complaint-from-wwfinternational-against-soco-international-plc.pdf More details on each complaint case which UK NCP have received can be found via the link to the Initial & Final assessments page which lists cases in chronological order https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/uk-national-contact-point-statements

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