Six Portuguese children and young adults filed a climate case before the ECtHR challenging 33 European states’ failures to take sufficient action to prevent dangerous climate change.
By way of a claim filed on 3 September 2020, the Applicants allege that 33 European states, including the United Kingdom, have violated their rights to life and rights to private and family life on the grounds they: (1) have failed to take sufficient mitigation measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions released within their territory; (2) have failed to regulate the export of fossil fuels from their territories; (3) have failed to regulate the import of carbon intensive goods into their territories; and (4) have failed to regulate private entities within their jurisdiction from contributing to overseas greenhouse gas emissions through their extraction of fossil fuels or financing of such extraction.
The ECtHR fast-tracked the case on 15 October 2020. The Applicants recently received the Respondent states’ observations. The next stage of the claim is for the Applicants’ legal team to respond to the Respondent States’ observations.
This is the first climate litigation case to be considered by the ECtHR and has been brought against the greatest number of respondent states in the ECtHR’s history. The potential ramifications of the claim on climate change policy across Europe are significant.
Josh Jackson is instructed by the Global Legal Action Network, led by Gerry Liston, as part of a counsel team of 8 barristers across different chambers.
For further information: https://youth4climatejustice.org/