In an unexpected decision widely hailed as historic, Germany’s highest court has ruled that the government’s climate legislation is insufficient, and lacks detail on emission reduction targets beyond 2030. Sören Amelang, Kerstine Appunn, Charlotte Nijhuis and Julian Wettengel at Clean Energy Wire run through the background and the consequences of the case brought by youth activists and NGOs. Legal experts say the decision “significantly strengthens” climate action by ruling that if the government fails to protect the climate it could violate citizens’ fundamental rights. The judgement has prompted the major parties to promise to put the meaningful details in place to meet the Paris goals by 2050. It has therefore pushed climate politics up the agenda in this important election year. Of particular importance is the judgement’s conclusion that global emissions reductions are not just a burden to be shared between nations, but between generations – and that it must be done equitably. In other words, costs and results must not be postponed to some distant theoretical future. That’s very good news for politicians, citizens and industries that want to see action now. Similar cases are underway in other countries, explain the authors.
Energy Post 7th May 2021 read more »
The young people taking their countries to court over climate inaction. Children and young adults around the world are demanding action from governments on global heating and the ecological crisis.
Guardian 7th May 2021 read more »