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  • Cited by 9
Cambridge University Press
Online publication date:
March 2021
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Book description

Despite the global endorsement of the Sustainable Development Goals, environmental justice struggles are growing all over the world. These struggles are not isolated injustices, but symptoms of interlocking forms of oppression that privilege the few while inflicting misery on the many and threatening ecological collapse. This handbook offers critical perspectives on the multi-dimensional, intersectional nature of environmental injustice and the cross-cutting forms of oppression that unite and divide these struggles, including gender, race, poverty, and indigeneity. The work sheds new light on the often-neglected social dimension of sustainability and its relationship to human rights and environmental justice. Using a variety of legal frameworks and case studies from around the world, this volume illustrates the importance of overcoming the fragmentation of these legal frameworks and social movements in order to develop holistic solutions that promote justice and protect the planet's ecosystems at a time of intensifying economic and ecological crisis.


'Given the challenge we face of responding effectively to the climate crisis, this book helps us to link legal frameworks and the struggles of social movements. It encourages us to deepen the relationship between climate justice, sustainable development and human rights in order to make the radical, systemic change that will ensure a sustainable future for all.'

Mary Robinson - Former President of Ireland and former UN High, Commissioner for Human Rights, Founder, Mary Robinson Foundation-Climate Justice, and UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Climate Change

'This is an innovative, informative and important book that challenges conventional wisdom around sustainable development. The authors critique society's continued loyalty to the fallacy of endless economic growth and the failure to integrate planetary limits, social justice, and human rights. Dozens of top scholars offer insights, wisdom, and pathways toward achieving justice and sustainability.'

David R. Boyd - UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and Environment and Associate Professor of Law, Policy, and Sustainability, School of Public Policy and Global Affairs, University of British Columbia

'How do we move beyond the fragmentation of legal frameworks and social movements to develop holistic solutions that are both just and sustainable? This compelling collection on the relationship between environmental justice, sustainable development, and human rights offers a roadmap that highlights the need for inter-struggle connections and coalitions to effect lasting systemic change.'

Julian Agyeman, PhD FRSA FRGS - Tufts University, Massachusetts

'Nothing could be more urgent than addressing the overlapping, inter-penetrating and injustice-soaked distributions of life and death now threatening all planetary life - human and non-human. This edited collection rises to that challenge. It does so by offering an extended encounter - both critical and renewing - with discourses and practices of sustainable development and environmental justice, addressing their ambivalence, while reaching towards the renewal of both fields as important future-facing arts of co-living. This is a timely, necessary and powerful book.'

Anna Grear - Professor of Law, Cardiff University, and Founder and editor-in-chief of the Journal of Human Rights and the Environment

'This innovative volume, edited by three leading environmental justice scholars, offers important insights on the intersection between sustainable development and the requirements of environmental justice. It brings much needed attention to this intersection globally with a particular focus on the Global South and the environmental justice issues confronting vulnerable groups. The case studies offer both geographic and sectoral coverage of issues to provide a comprehensive understanding of the topic.'

Jacqueline Peel - Professor of Law, Melbourne Law School

'This anguished anthology articulates the truth of the maxim that sustainable development entails the processes and practices of unsustainable thought and provocatively calls instead for just development in the twenty first century.'

Upendra Baxi - Emeritus Professor of Law, University of Warwick, and Jindal Global Law School, India

'The Cambridge Handbook on Environmental Justice and Sustainable Development is a timely, provocative and exciting contribution to our understanding of the neglected social pillar of sustainable development and its relationship to the intersecting vulnerabilities that produce environmental injustice. It strikes at the core of the contradictions inherent in unlimited economic growth on a finite planet, and foregrounds the intractable entwinement of social and environmental well-being. It is a must-read for policy makers, activists and scholars of every ilk engaged with the intersecting crises of the Anthropocene.'

Tracy Lynn Field - School of Law, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa

'The incontrovertible value of this very timely book is in how it compellingly and thoughtfully tells us what we should do to stop irreversible ecological harm. Anyone who wants to find out how environmental degradation intersects with individual and group oppression, and what can be done to achieve just and sustainable solutions must read this book.'

James Thuo Gathii - Wing-Tat Lee Chair in International Law and Professor of Law, Loyola University School of Law, Illinois

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