About this Event
The IEN is hosting an event to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the UNECE Aarhus Convention, at the King's Inns on the 29th of September 2023. This September also marks the 11th anniversary of the Convention coming into effect in Ireland. We hope you will consider joining us in person, and share news of this event within your networks.
The Aarhus Convention was described by the former Secretary-General of the United Nations, Kofi Annan, as the ‘most ambitious venture in environmental democracy undertaken under the auspices of the United Nations’. The Lucca Declaration from the First Meeting of the Parties to the Convention stated that the Convention is ‘more than an environmental agreement’ as it ‘addresses fundamental aspects of human rights and democracy, including government transparency, responsiveness and accountability to society’. 25 years on, it is only appropriate to look back and forward, particularly in 2023, as this year marks the midway point for the Sustainable Development Goals.
The event this September, will focus on a positive celebration of the Aarhus Convention. We plan to reflect and remind us all of its core objective to contribute to an environment adequate to our health and well being, and how the Convention contributes to that. We will also reflect on its ongoing and indeed increased relevance given the existential environmental challenges of our world of today with what the IPCC has described as interdependent climate and biodiversity crises. The 25th anniversary for the Convention as a whole, and the 11th anniversary of it's comming into effect in Ireland are important opportunities to reflect on what a progressive and relevant Human Rights Convention Aarhus is, and how central it is to Environmental Democracy and the Rule of Law.
We are honoured that the event will be chaired by: Mr Justice Frank Clarke, former Chief Justice, President of the Law Reform Commission.
Our stellar line up of speakers will include:
Ms Justice Marie Baker, Supreme Court of Ireland;
Professor Áine Ryall, UCC School of Law, and Chair of the Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee;
Dr Tom Ryan, Director of the Office of Environmental Enforcement, EPA Ireland;
Ms Deirdre Gallagher, Senior Investigator, Office of the Commissioner for Environmental Information and Office of the Information Commissioner;
Mr Tom Flynn S.C.;
Mr Gregory Jones K.C., Francis Taylor Building, Inner Temple, London and the Law Library
Ms Sibylle Grohs Senior Lawyer, DG-ENVI, Environmental Compliance – Enforcement Unit EU Commission; and
Mr Michel Forst, Special Rapporteur on Environmental Defenders under the Aarhus Convention.
Final programme details will be available shortly.
Registration starts at 2:30 pm with tea / coffee / juice on arrival.
The conference will be followed by a reception to facilitate further networking and opportunities for positive and invigorating discussions on how we need to collectively move forward from here.
If you would like to find out more about the Aarhus Convention which is a Human Rights Convention - you can find a quick overview here and the official quick guide can be found here
Event Venue & Nearby Stays
The King's Inn Dublin and online, The King's Inns, Dublin 1, Ireland