Conflicts between environmental protection and exploitation for economic gains in Zambia has led to politicians pushing for mining for economic gain and environmental conservation-ist civil society organisation taking legal action for environmental protection. The qualitative interviews research conducted through online Skype and Zoom Meeting video calls due to COVID-19 travel limitations, analyzes the civil society organizations’ legal mobilisation against the mining activity in the Lower Zambezi National Park for environmental rights protection. Although with different specific areas of environmental concerns, the civil society organizations were concerned about endangered local communities’ livelihoods and animals’ welfare. In a bid to protect the environmental rights, they engaged in strategic litigation involving court case supported by other strategies such as public protests, advocacy, social mobilization, engaging international non-governmental organizations and online media peti-tion. Despite not outrightly winning the court case, the strategic litigation managed to halt the mining project. The strategy of using different media platforms raised awareness such that many Zambians voices began speaking against the mining project forcing the president to halt the project and promising that he would follow the will of the people. Considering growing environmental catastrophes in Zambia such as droughts and large-scale mining pol-lution rendering land unproductive thereby threatening livelihoods, environmental protec-tion needs to be prioritized. Social mobilisation strategy to raise more voices to speak against violation of environmental rights needs to be intensified.

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Misiedjan, Daphina
Social Justice Perspectives (SJP)
International Institute of Social Studies

Mukwakwa, Nester. (2020, December 18). Conflict between mining project and environmental protection: analyzing NGOs’ legal mobilisation against of mining in the Lower Zambezi National Park. Social Justice Perspectives (SJP). Retrieved from