09 March 2015, Geneva; The Maldives reiterated the importance it attaches to the human rights obligations relating to the enjoyment of a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment during the Interactive debate with the Independent Expert on Human Rights and the Environment at the United Nations Human Rights Council today. The Maldives also highlighted constitutional guarantees in place that entitles every citizen to adequate nutritious food and clean water, and a healthy and an ecologically balanced environment as well as the protection afforded under the Environmental protection and preservation Act of the Maldives enacted in 1993.
Today’s discussion was based on the Independent Expert’s report on the compilation of good practices relating to the enjoyment of a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment. The Maldives acknowledged that a lot still remains to be done on this front and expressed hope that this compilation of good practices would be an important tool for the government and other states to strengthen the Environmental Policy framework.
The Maldives played a key role in the establishment of the mandate in 2012, along with a likeminded core group of countries, including Switzerland, Costa Rica and Slovenia. Since the three year term of the Independent Expert concludes this session, the Maldives thanked the Independent Expert for his excellent work in carrying out his mandate and requested the support of the members of the Human Rights Council to renew the mandate for additional three years, in order to continue with the important work the Independent Expert has begun in addressing the issue of human rights obligations relating to the enjoyment of a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment.