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Approved the first law on climate change and food security for Latin America and the Caribbean

  |   SUN Country Network, SUN UN Network

The Board of Directors of the Latin American and Caribbean Parliament (PARLATINO) unanimously approved the first Model Law on Climate Change and Food and Nutrition Security (SAN).

It is an instrument that establishes a legal framework of reference to inspire national laws, which will allow each State to implement policies and strategies at the national level.

The approved Law identifies the key regulatory elements to facilitate the implementation of mitigation and adaptation strategies, addresses the management of climate change, and deals with the principles that should be considered when drafting public policies.

In addition, it considers education on these subjects, and refers to the protection of genetic resources against climate change. It also promotes the importance of preventing, mitigating, preparing for and responding to emergencies, among other issues.

Climate Change and Food and Nutrition Security

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), there is an important interrelation between agriculture, food and nutrition security, the right to adequate food and climate change.

“It is imperative that we take action to address climate change and farmers’ adaptation,” said Ignacia Holmes, FAO Sustainable and Resilient Agriculture Officer.

“This Law allows us to advance in rebuilding better after the pandemic, with an emphasis on more sustainable and resilient means of production, in addition to reducing poverty and food insecurity,” she stated.

Objectives of the Law

“It is the first regional law that seeks to explicitly face the challenges posed by global climate change and, at the same time, respond to the urgent and necessary transformation of food systems,” said Argentine Senator Silvia Giacoppo, Alternate Secretary of PARLATINO Commissions and focal point for FAO.

“The general objective is to establish the minimum budgets for environmental protection to guarantee actions, instruments and strategies for adaptation and mitigation in our countries. All this in accordance with the specific objectives of the Paris Agreement ”, explained the legislator.

Climate emergency and the right to food

The law contains a chapter for emergency situations and establishes the obligation of States to prevent, prepare for and respond to various types of climate-related disasters, mitigating the impact of such disasters on food and nutritional security.

For Manuela Cuvi, Legal Officer of the FAO Development Law Service, “States must adopt appropriate emergency preparedness measures to guarantee the right to adequate food.”

“In the same way, they must take measures with a view to sustainably managing natural resources, as well as establishing adequate food distribution systems,” she added.

The Model Law on Climate Change and SAN was supported by FAO, the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), Spanish Cooperation and the Mexican Agency for International Development Cooperation (AMEXCID).

These projects of. Law will now go to the last instance of approval in the PARLATINO which is its General Assembly and then be sent to each of the national congresses and assemblies of the 23 member countries.

Model Law on water and sanitation

Added to the Model Law on Climate Change and SAN is another victory: the approval of the Model Law on Community Water and Sanitation Systems, which was also approved in PARLATINO.

This advance – which had the support of FAO, Mexican institutions (FPH Chapter Mexico-SEMARNAT-IMTA-AMEXCID) and Spanish Cooperation – allows communities to have a tool to demand their human right to water and sanitation.
In its approach, this Law includes the recognition of the right of indigenous and comparable peoples and communities over the waters of the territories they inhabit.

It also encourages the responsible, informed and organized participation of society to guarantee the availability and quality of water, in the present and for future generations.

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