What is it about?
Many countries have begun to treat climate change as a separate area of law. This is because of how seriously it is affecting our lives, and how important it is that we change our behaviours to prevent it getting worse. The United Nations International Law Commission is currently drafting guidelines for the protection of the atmosphere. However, some people think that problems caused by climate change should be dealt with under existing environmental law. It is not actually that long since environmental law itself became a separate area of law. That happened in the 1990s, and people also disagreed about whether that was needed.
Photo by Tingey Injury Law Firm on Unsplash
Why is it important?
KEY TAKEAWAY: The earth’s atmosphere and climate is ‘transnational’. That means that – unlike other aspects of our environment – it does not have national boundaries. Protecting the atmosphere and climate needs global agreement and action. Treating this as a separate area of law may make it easier to reach that agreement.
Read the Original
This page is a summary of: Climate Law and Its Skeptics: Whither Protection of the Atmosphere?, Environmental Policy and Law, May 2021, IOS Press, DOI: 10.3233/epl-219001.
You can read the full text:
Are Climate Change Laws Fair? How China Views Fair Climate Responsibility
Countries are more likely to comply with international laws on climate change if the laws are perceived to be fair.
Water is a human right – we need to do more to protect it
Climate change will mean it becomes more difficult and more expensive to get access to drinking water. Some people will be affected worse than others. This is a breach of their human rights. We need to create and enforce laws that reduce the effects of climate change, to protect everyone’s access to water.
Why doesn’t climate law protect children’s human rights?
We know that the children of today will face the climate problems of tomorrow. Our children have the right to a sustainable environment. We must make sure our climate change policies protect children’s human rights.
Climate Change Knowledge Cooperative
Explore the wider collection of climate change research summaries.
Climate Change Litigation: Making corporations pull up their socks and pull down their emissions
This judgement could drive further climate change litigation against large corporations and make them more responsible in the fight against climate change.
Spotlight on: human rights
Frequently answered questions about why climate change is a human rights issue. Explore our summaries of the science on topics such as access to drinking water, clean air, food security, energy and more.
Be the first to contribute to this page