ARTICLE 19 South America will join delegates from the 20 signatory countries of Principle 10 of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development in Panama City on October 27-29, to continue negotiating a regional agreement on the right to information.
ARTICLE 19 has been part of this process since its adoption and strongly urges the delegates to agree that the final result of the process should be a legally binding convention that encompasses the range situations and initiatives across the region and provides for strong rights of access to information, public participation and access to justice for all persons.
“A binding regional agreement is essential for the implementation of access rights in the region,” said Joara Marchezini, ARTICLE 19 Access to Information Officer, who will be attending the meeting to present a study conducted in partnership with the Brazilian Institute of Agricultural and Forest Management and Certification, analysing the rights of access to information and justice in the Brazilian legislation.
The Second Meeting of the Negotiating Committee of the Regional Agreement on Access to Information, Public Participation and Justice in Environmental Matters in Latin America and the Caribbean will be held in Panama City, and is organized by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and the government of Panama.
Principle 10 of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development promotes public participation in environmental decision-making and access to information and justice in environmental matters.
In June 2012, at the Rio + 20 Summit, nations from the Latin American and Caribbean region issued a declaration agreeing to begin discussions on developing a regional treaty on access to environmental information, public participation and access to justice (The Rio Principle 10 rights), under the auspices of the UN Economic Commission for Latin American and Caribbean (ECLAC). The treaty would be an important step in advancing the rights across the region in the same manner that the UNECE Aarhus Convention did for Europe. Since then, ECLAC has been hosting meetings and conducting research on the current situation in the region.