EarthRights 2020-2024 Strategic Plan

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In 2020, EarthRights International will celebrate its 25th anniversary.

This strategic plan reflects those 25 years of experience working with frontline communities around the world to assert power and demand corporate and governmental accountability for respecting human rights and the environment. It presents our vision of a world in which the worst impacts of climate change are averted, earth rights defenders are able to effectively carry out their work, and corporations are held accountable for the harms they cause to communities and the environment. 

We are in the midst of a full-blown climate crisis in which urgent action is needed to hold corporations accountable for climate damage and to support front-line communities resisting new fossil fuel projects. Civic space continues to shrink and attacks and criminalization against earth rights defenders are intensifying. And impunity for corporate human rights abuses remains largely unchecked. 

We believe EarthRights adds critical value to global movements in these areas through strategic litigation, our training programs and the Mitharsuu Center, and our growing global campaigns and communications. We will continue to bring innovative corporate accountability cases in the United States and will support such cases in other countries. We will also seek to address the human rights challenges posed by Chinese companies in the regions we work. We will implement a “protect, prevent, reveal, redress” strategy in support of earth rights defenders that will seek to challenge the root causes of threats against them. And we will support earth rights defenders who are at the front lines of resistance to fossil fuels and pushing toward more sustainable alternatives. 

To leverage our strengths, respond to the challenges described above, and achieve our vision we have identified three broad global goals for the next five years: 

  • Global Goal 1 – Climate Justice and Accountability: Fossil fuel companies and governments are held increasingly accountable for climate-related damages to frontline communities and for respecting communities’ rights vis-a-vis climate-damaging fossil fuel, hydro, and agribusiness projects.
  • Global Goal 2 – Earth Rights Defenders: Criminalization and attacks against earth rights defenders are reduced and legal protections strengthened in countries where EarthRights works.
  • Global Goal 3 – Corporate Accountability: The legal and social accountability of corporations for respecting community rights, including to land and a healthy environment, are increased in regions where EarthRights works.

To achieve these goals, we will work to deepen our collaboration across our training, legal, and campaigns teams, increase our focus on gender and social inclusion, strengthen support for the alumni of our training programs, and build our capacity to carry out local, national, and global campaigns and advocacy. We will explore opportunities for influence in new regions. All of these efforts will be linked to an increased emphasis on monitoring, evaluating, and learning from our work.