Why Does the Planet Need Democracy?

The Climate and Rule of Law Crises Are Unavoidably Intertwined

17 November 2021

Zuzanna Rudzińska-Bluszcz and Marcin Stoczkiewicz

The climate and environment cannot be protected without democracy, the rule of law and the guarantee of human rights. There will also be no democratic rule of law and no human rights on a dead planet.

Two crises — that of the climate and the erosion of the rule of law in democratic states — are undeniable facts being played out on national, European and global stages. Although we generally view them as separate issues, the recent evidence from Poland explains why it is worth challenging this position.

Is there a connection between the fact that a billion zlotys are being pumped into the construction project at the coal-fired power plant in Ostrołęka and the plans to limit access to public information? What does Orlen have to do with the acquisition of local newspapers published by Polska Press or the license for TVN with the planned logging in the Białowieża Forest? Can you find a common denominator between Lex Izera, which allows cutting down Polish forests and attacks on judges or unconstitutional reforms of the judiciary? It is time to recognize that the crisis of the rule of law and the climate crisis are not separate phenomena.

The Crisis Of the Rule Of Law Harms the Environment

It is time to see that the crisis of the rule of law and the climate crisis go hand in hand. It is safe to argue that these phenomena show a systemic feedback loop, that is they reinforce and drive each other.

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