The Pacific island of Vanuatu has called for ecocide— wide-scale, long-term environmental damage—to be considered an international crime equivalent to genocide.
The International Criminal Court is currently responsible for prosecuting four internationally recognized crimes against peace: genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and the crime of aggression.
The organization wants any agreed-upon criminal definition of ecocide to include the impacts of climate change as well as other forms of environmental harm.
To change the Rome Statute, the head of a state that is party to the International Criminal Court must submit a formal amendment.
If a two-thirds majority approve the change, it can be adopted into the Rome Statute and countries can formally ratify it.