Climate justice without modern slavery now! -

Climate justice without modern slavery now!

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Climate crisis and modern slavery

The climate crisis is here, and people are feeling the consequences now. Climate-induced migration and displacement are putting populations on the frontlines of the climate crisis at increased risk of forced marriage, forced labor, and exploitation. We need world leaders to act now by implementing solutions to the climate emergency that put human rights and measures to address modern slavery at their center. Climate justice without modern slavery now!

A just transition – the social changes needed to move to a low-carbon economy – must not be built on the back of forced labor and modern slavery. Efforts to reduce emissions, such as the transition to solar power, cannot rely on forced labor and an exploited workforce in its supply chain. But with almost 45% of the world’s solar-grade polysilicon supply found in the Uyghur Region and the four largest global solar panel suppliers implicated in the Uyghur forced labor system in China, the world’s solar panel industry is currently at high risk of forced labor. 

How to achieve climate justice…

As governments and international organizations pursue solutions to tackle the climate crisis and achieve a sustainable future, we are urging world leaders to commit to a transition to renewable energy whilst ensuring that forced labor in mineral extraction and manufacturing is eradicated. That means ensuring robust mandatory human rights due diligence legislation is enforced in the procurement of renewables contracts to hold companies accountable for forced labor and prevent exploitation in supply chains as we build a new energy mix for the future. 

For real progress to be made at COP27 and beyond, world leaders need to actively promote a just transition to responsible renewable energy by: 

  • Recognizing that human rights are central to the climate response. 
  • Adopting new ambitious green policies and regulatory frameworks that protect workers, local communities, and Indigenous Peoples. 
  • Ensuring human rights due diligence in the procurement of renewables contracts and that exploitative work conditions are prevented as we build a new energy mix for the future. 
  • Ensuring that renewable energy development results in equal access to clean, reliable, and affordable energy for their populations 


… without modern slavery

We recognize the need for urgent climate action rooted in human rights as a priority. That’s why we are calling on global leaders to ensure the just transition prioritizes building resilience to modern slavery and embraces this as an opportunity to further develop human rights due diligence frameworks for a truly just transition to a low carbon economy. 

Freedom United is urgently calling on the Secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to ensure that the just transition and responses to the climate emergency advance the human rights agenda. 

  • November 7, 2022: UN human rights experts urge states to mainstream human rights in all climate action & draw attention to how the climate crisis exacerbates human trafficking. We welcome this statement & call on world leaders to take immediate action. Read more here. 

Chip in and help end modern slavery once and for all.


Freedom United is interested in hearing from our community and welcomes relevant, informed comments, advice, and insights that advance the conversation around our campaigns and advocacy. We value inclusivity and respect within our community. To be approved, your comments should be civil.

stop icon A few things we do not tolerate: comments that promote discrimination, prejudice, racism, or xenophobia, as well as personal attacks or profanity. We screen submissions in order to create a space where the entire Freedom United community feels safe to express and exchange thoughtful opinions.

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Clive Rubin
Clive Rubin
1 year ago

Their can be no justice without dignity. Whether reversing climate change and or upholding human rights. They are interlinked and inseparable. Human trafficking, incarceration and forced labour are the worst forms of human on human exploitation, They are the direct result of current climate policies, decisions and investments. If the course of climate change is to be tackled, it follows that slavery too will become history. Were one or other not decisively dealt with everywhere will be at war.

Robert Cluck
Robert Cluck
1 year ago

I think we need to be careful about the idea of “clean” energy or sustainable energy or green energy. These are “feel good” words that are not always used for benign purposes. Yes, we need to move away as quickly as possible from use of the dense energy (fossil fuels) and the clear danger the extraction, processing and end use of these finite resources pose. But alternatives being proposed (see above!) have serious consequences as well, the opportunity for enslaving individuals among them.

Muhammed Israfil
1 year ago

No comment but agree with this recommendation.

Ask the Secretariat of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change to center human rights


Help us reach 10,000

To the Secretariat of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change:

The climate crisis is here and we need urgent solutions that center human rights and measures to address modern slavery. As we rapidly reimagine and build a low carbon economy, it cannot, and need not, be built on the back of forced labor and modern slavery.

I am calling on you to ensure a truly just transition and support responses to the climate emergency that advance the human rights agenda and prioritize building resilience to modern slavery.

Freedom United will protect your privacy while updating you on campaigns, news and stories about modern slavery.

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