Paralegals for Environmental Justice: NEW PRACTICE GUIDE

Large parts of the world, irrespective of their level of economic development, are at the cusp of severe environmental crises. In these regions, the operations of extractive projects such as large scale plantations, mining and industrial development have negated or worsened the economic, social and physical well-being of communities in their neighbourhoods and beyond. Their robust national and regional laws and institutions for the protection and governance of the environment and natural resources have remained on paper and the non-compliance by governments and corporations has had profound effects on community livelihoods, health, access to land and quality of life.

CPR-Namati’s Practice Guide for Environment Justice Paralegals is a step in the direction of closing this environmental enforcement gap. The guide provides a methodology for community mobilisers, activists and citizens groups to shift their attention from stating the problem to getting grievances addressed by environmental institutions. The guide is based on four years of work done by the paralegals of CPR-Namati Environment Justice Program to assist affected communities file complaints and seek remedies in over 150 cases of non-compliance in India. The full guide can be accessed here .

We hope that this guide will help local organisations and community groups to address environmental conflicts and seek useful remedies for affected people.

For more EJ paralegal tools, please see Groundtruthing methodology note , report on Groundtruthing of Environmental Violations in Sarguja, Chhattisgarh , report on the Community-Led Ground Truthing of Environmental Violations in Mundra, Kutch, and the Handbook on Legal and Administrative Remedies for Community Level Environment Justice Practitioners .



Environmental justice program has come at the right time due to the fact that the situation of environment is becoming worse in the whole world. Paralegals come from the community and work with the community and play a big role in empowering community to address challenges affecting them. This guide therefore if used well by paralegals will enhance improved environment. Happy New Year NAMATI family.


This is fantastic!!! Well done and congratulations!!!


Congratulations on this amazing guide!

Kanchi Kohli Thank you for sharing this very very interesting document on environmental justice.


:clap: well done, team!

I’d like to take this opportunity to announce that we are hosting a webinar on February 7th, 2018 to further discuss this Practice Guide. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear from the authors, ask questions, and continue the fight for environmental justice.

Sign up and follow the discussion here:


Dear @namati_staff,

We have come up with translations of the Paralegal Practice Guide on Environmental Justice in three Indian languages (Oriya, Gujarati and Kannada) and in Indonesia Bahasa. Please share these with those who, you think, may find it useful. Any feedback on these or/and the English version is welcome.



P.S. We will soon be sharing the Paralegal Practice Guide in Hindi as well.


Thanks for the update, @meenakshikapoor! I see the links are all to CPR site – have you had them uploaded to the network’s resource library yet?


@mckinleycharles I have uploaded the new translations and updated the main resource page- Practice Guide for Environmental Justice Paralegals.

@meenakshikapoor let me know when the Hindi one is available and I will add it to the resource library!


Thanks, @MayaReddy!

FYI – @vivektrivedi – flagging this for you so you know the guide is now available in mulitple languages, which are linked to from the English version (as per Maya’s hyperlink). There is a link for this already, I believe.


Thanks, Kinley! I’ve added it to our content repository.

This guide details a revolutionary process that can surely empower exploited, marginalized communities. Kudos to you all @kanchikohli !


thank you for your generous feedback @Acogod. It is the collective effort of so many of us…and the journey has just begun.


Dear all,

Now the guide is available in Hindi as well. You can find it here.



Whenever Environmental Degradation is raised, the entire focus is on Large Scale players, we have very many small scale players that do gross damage yet the focus on them is coated with caution as they continue releasing toxics into river, destroying the topology, etc…is the deliberate avoidance by environmentalist driven by “fear” of losing community support because it may lead to losing of funds from development partners. When environmentalists prop up the community against the large scale players it attracts development partners, am I wrong?

Exactly, we will take into consideration this guide