On June 2, 2023, we hosted a special event about our inherent, Charter and United Nations rights to a liveable world. It was daunting but then very inspiring too. We have rights. The fossil fuel industry is built on a financial and legal house of cards. Listen to our panelists and feel hope.
Dr. David Boyd, the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, UBC professor, and environmental optimist
Andrew Gage, the climate change lead at West Coast Environmental Law and Sue Big Oil
Dr. David Maenz, Kaitlyn Harvey, and applicant 15-year-old Sabrina Dykstra from the lawsuit filed March 31, 2023, by Climate Justice Saskatoon and seven residents against SaskPower, Crown Investments, and the Saskatchewan Government
Lawyer Danielle Gallant and plaintiffs Alex Neufeldt and Sophia Mathur from the Ecojustice lawsuit filed in November 2019 in Ontario. It is making its way through the courts and making history at the same time.
PS Here is the scary report from the Climate Institute of Canada Damage Control
Agenda – Part I (1 hour)
11:00 am ET Welcome & Land Acknowledgement
11:05 am ET Dr. David Boyd, the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, UBC professor, and environmental optimist
11:15 am ET Andrew Gage, the climate change lead at West Coast Environmental Law and Sue Big Oil
11:25 am ET Dr. David Maenz, Kaitlyn Harvey and 15-year-old Sabrina Dykstra from the lawsuit filed March 31, 2023, by Climate Justice Saskatoon and seven residents against SaskPower, Crown Investments, and the Saskatchewan Government
11:35 am ET Danielle Gallant and youth plaintiffs Alex Neufeldt and Sophia Mathur from the Ecojustice #GenClimateAction lawsuit filed in November 2019 in Ontario. It is making its way through the courts and making history at the same time.
11:45 am ET Parliamentarians will then be invited to ask questions of the guests.
12:00 pm ET Part I ends
Part II (30 min)
Please allow 5 minutes for rooms to be set-up
12:05 pm CCL Canada volunteers and their parliamentarians are welcome to go into breakout rooms if this time is deemed appropriate.
Month of June – our volunteers will continue to lobby their Parliamentarians.
Dr. David Boyd
David is the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment (2018-2024) and a professor of law, policy, and sustainability at the University of British Columbia, jointly appointed at the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability and the School of Public Policy and Global Affairs.
Boyd is also the author of ten books and over 100 reports and articles on environmental law and policy, human rights, and constitutional law. His books include Thirst for Justice (2020), The Rights of Nature (ECW Press, 2017), The Optimistic Environmentalist (ECW Press, 2015), The Right to a Healthy Environment (UBC Press, 2012) and The Environmental Rights Revolution (UBC Press, 2011).
He lives on Pender Island with his partner and their daughter, and loves to run, hike, kayak, and cycle!
Andrew (he/him/his) was an environmental activist before he was an environmental lawyer: he was accepted into law school shortly after being arrested for protesting logging in Clayoquot Sound, on Vancouver Island’s West Coast. During law school Andrew helped found the University of Victoria’s Environmental Law Centre and volunteered with the noted Indian environmental lawyer, M.C. Mehta. These experiences changed his understanding of what is possible through law.
Andrew is currently the project lead for West Coast’s Climate Change program. Under his direction, the program has focused on the legal and professional consequences – to industry, government and professionals – of failing to address climate change.
Andrew has played a wide variety of roles within West Coast since first coming to the organization in 2001, from helping communities press for more sustainable forestry to working to protect farmworkers from pesticide exposure. In addition to his climate work, Andrew is the lead author for the Environmental Law Alert blog and has published a series of cutting-edge academic papers on the rights of the public to a healthy natural environment.
Andrew lives in Victoria with his wife, Grace, and their two children, Rebecca and Colm. Andrew enjoys playing the violin, gardening, and sailing with his family.
David D. Maenz, Ph.D.
Dr. David Maenz received Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Saskatchewan. Academic appointments at the University of Alberta, University of Montreal and University of Saskatchewan. Left academia to cofound an Ag Biotech company in 2000. Retired from business interests in 2015. In retirement, pursued interests in climate change mitigation and climate change policy. Author of “The Price of Carbon” published in 2017. Intervenor in the Saskatchewan, Alberta and Supreme Court challenges to the Federal Government’s Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act. Recent activities include analysis, writing, presentations, and media interviews on emissions reduction pathways with a focus on Saskatchewan and the electricity supply sector of the province. Contributor to the Saskatchewan court challenge as a technical expert.
Sabrina Dykstra is a fifteen-year-old high school student from Saskatoon, SK. Since becoming aware of dangerous climate change has made personal changes to live more sustainably, as well as encouraging friends and family to do the same
In her free time is an avid runner who just completed her first half marathon. She ss an applicant in the Saskpower climate litigation in SK.
Kaitlyn is a Métis lawyer, mother, and small business owner. She holds a Juris Doctorate degree and a bachelor’s degree in Geography from the University of Saskatchewan. During university, she worked as research assistant at Environment Canada and was a teaching assistant in two legal programs designed for Indigenous peoples. She also worked at CLASSIC, a poverty law clinical program in Saskatoon.
Kaitlyn has a long history of dedication to serving the people of Saskatoon. She has sat on several boards and committees and has dedicated countless hours to supporting community development and educational initiatives. She uses her skills as an advocate and negotiator to help strengthen her community because she firmly believes that by meeting the needs of our youngest and most vulnerable people and giving everyone a chance to succeed, we all benefit.
Danielle is a member of the Quebec Bar as well as the Law Society of Ontario and is fluently bilingual. She holds a Licentiate in Civil Law (LL.L.) and an Honours Bachelor in International Development and Globalization (B.Soc.Sc.) from the University of Ottawa, where she graduated summa cum laude. She also completed her Master’s in Global Sustainability and Environmental Law (LL.M.) at the same university, during which she focused her research on the human rights impacts of environmental issues and on climate change litigation.
As a member of Ecojustice’s Climate Change team, Danielle has worked on several prominent constitutional files. She is part of the legal team representing seven youth against the Government of Ontario for weakening its climate target for 2030, which threatens the youngest generations’ fundamental rights under the Charter. She was also involved in the reference cases surrounding the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act and is working on a judicial review of a project approval relating to the Goldboro LNG project in Nova Scotia. She is also counsel on a legal challenge to Quebec’s mining regime, which allows for the registration of mining claims on Indigenous territory without consultation.
Alex Neufeldt (she/her) is a fashion designer and climate advocate living on unceded Algonquin territory (Ottawa, Ontario). She has proudly volunteered with CCL Canada since 2016, and is one of 7 young people taking the Ontario government to court over their abysmal GHG reduction target. Before changing careers to become a fashion designer, Alex worked in policy for the federal public service. Elle est bilingue, donc n’hésitez-pas à lui parler en français ou en anglais!
Sophia Mathur (she/her) was born in April 2007. Her environmental lobbying of politicians began at age 7 and has taken her all the way to the US Congress and the Canadian Parliament with the organization Citizens’ Climate Lobby. She did her first Friday’s Fore Future Strike on November 2, 2018. In the spring of 2019, alongside Fridays For Future youth and friends, they successfully empowered the City of Greater Sudbury to declare a climate emergency, and they now hope their city will endorse the global Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty. In November 2019, Sophia and 6 youth activists took the Ontario Government to court for weakening Ontario’s climate targets. Alongside their lawyers at Ecojustice and Stockwoods LLP, they are undaunted in protecting the rights to a liveable world of all Ontarians living now and in the future. Elle parle français aussi.
On 10 December 1948, in the aftermath of World War II, the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) adopted the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Today, civilization as we know it is threatened by polycrises including inequality, biodiversity loss and pollution that are trampling on human rights. Most people don’t know they have rights. The inalienable fact is human rights are inherent. More so, have hope because rebirth often follows decimation and much has happened since the UN Declaration of Human Rights almost 75 years ago.
Today, human rights are embedded into many countries’ national laws. Internationally, there are the UN Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous People, the UN Rights of the Child, rights embedded into the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the UN Right to a Clean, Healthy and Sustainable Environment (July 2022) and Women’s and Indigenous’ rights embedded into the landmark UN Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework in December 2022.
To help you understand each point we have compiled a Laser Talks booklet.
To support your lobbying efforts, the Laser Talks Action Team has done their best to compile the most relevant Laser Talks.
We encourage you to print copies.