On Octobre 20-22 2021, the Canadian Council on International Law organized its 50th Annual Conference as a series of virtual conferences. See the event’s programme here.
CPIJ organized and financed a panel titled “Ecocide as an International Crime? Forging New Roads of Accountability for Mass Destruction of Ecosystems” which took place on October 20th.
In the wake of rapidly increasing environmental devastation, from climate change to biodiversity loss to large-scale deforestation, practitioners and advocates have increasingly sought to use international criminal law to hold the perpetrators of this destruction accountable and stem future harms. Support for recognition of an international crime of “Ecocide” – or mass damage and destruction of ecosystems – has been steadily gaining traction at a global level. By June 2021, an expert panel of international lawyers will have developed a definition of ecocide as a crime that could be enshrined in the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, alongside genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and the crime of aggression.
This panel examines the opportunities and challenges presented by this new push to use international criminal law in the context of serious environmental degradation. Its aim is to create an initial space for exchange, between academics and practitioners from different international legal disciplines in Canada (environmental, criminal, Indigenous) on the potential contribution of an international crime of ecocide to long-term ecosystem protection efforts.
Ecocide as an International Crime? Forging New Roads of Accountability for Mass Destruction of Ecosystems
Moderator : Érick Sullivan, Partenariat canadien pour la justice internationale