Climate Politics: Can ecocide be judged? a story by Hitomi Takemura, Associate Professor, Hitotsubashi University [in Japanese]
Summary Large-scale destruction of the environment and ecosystems is known as ecocide, and some international law experts have called for an amendment to the Statute of the International Criminal Court to make ecocide a serious international law crime. However, the hurdles to amending the Statute of the International Criminal Court are high, and the amendments would have to be accepted by States. Moreover, ecocide is currently a new concept and is not yet an established crime under customary international law. Politically, making ecocide a crime under the Statute of the International Criminal Court may further harden the attitude of non-participating states towards the Court. One possible way to deal with this challenge might be to explore whether ecocide falls within the scope of existing crimes under the Statute, such as crimes against humanity and war crimes.