Climate Change in Greenland and the Complexity of Human Rights Protection in Practice
13 Pages Posted: 28 Mar 2022
Date Written: February 23, 2022
This chapter examines the impacts of climate change in Greenland, and the challenges for a human rights-based response, in the context of its colonial past and the complexity of its contemporary system of governance. Greenland at once enjoys a fairly high degree of independence from Denmark and at the same time remains subject to its oversight, both legally and economically. The first section outlines the impact of climate change in Greenland, which are perceived locally both as deleterious and as harbouring potential opportunities. It then describes the colonization of Greenland and the gradual shift towards its self-governance, if not (yet) independence. The chapter elaborates how the enforcement and implementation of human rights obligations of the Danish state are made more complex by the governance arrangements within which those obligations sit. The final sections pose questions to consider in the transition to potential statehood and draws conclusions.
Keywords: Greenland, human rights, climate change
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