European court forces 33 governments to prove emissions cuts in line with Paris climate accord

Posted: February 26, 2021 by oldbrew in Emissions, government, Legal
Tags: ,


Climate ‘lawfare’ marches on. Is the Paris accord legally enforceable, and if so how might offenders be penalised?
– – –
Countries named in a legal complaint include the 27 members of the EU, the UK, Switzerland and Russia, reports the National News.

The European Court of Human Rights is forcing 33 governments to prove they are cutting emissions in line with the requirements of the 2015 Paris climate accord.

The court also rejected an attempt by those governments to overturn its decision to fast-track a lawsuit filed by six young Portuguese climate activists.

The activists claim the countries’ efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions are inadequate.

The governments asked the court to drop its priority status for the case and hear their argument that the case was inadmissible, the activists’ legal representatives said on Friday.

But the court dismissed the arguments against an urgent hearing and denied their application to defer scrutiny of their climate policies.

The governments now have until May 27 to submit their legal defence.

The activists are aged between 12 and 21.

Four of them live in central Portugal, where bushfires blamed in part on climate change killed more than 100 people in 2017.

The others live in Lisbon, a coastal city threatened by rising sea levels.

Full report here.

Comments
  1. oldbrew says:

    UN says Paris accord targets are no good anyway…

    The newest pledges by countries to cut greenhouse gas emissions are falling far short of what’s needed to limit global warming to what the Paris climate accord seeks, a new United Nations report finds.

    So the U.N.’s climate chief is telling nations to go back and try harder.
    . . .
    “We are very, very far from where we need to be,” U.N. climate chief Patricia Espinosa said. “What we need to put on the table is much more radical and much more transformative than we have been doing until now.”

    https://www.nbcnews.com/science/environment/carbon-cutting-pledges-countries-nowhere-enough-un-says-rcna317
    – – –
    Most so-called greenhouse gas is water vapour, so trying to cut human-caused CO2 is a trivial sideshow. We shouldn’t have to be here saying that, it’s obvious.

    Meanwhile, EV car sales in the UK are going badly…

    Electric car sales need ‘substantial growth’ to hit 2030 target
    26 Feb. 2021

    …with battery electric cars comprising 0.5 percent [of the market].
    https://www.motoringresearch.com/car-news/electric-car-sales-need-substantial-growth/

  2. ivan says:

    Does The European Court of Human Rights actually have jurisdiction in the UK now after Brexit, Russia and Switzerland?

    It also sounds as if the young, brainwashed green activists need to go to school and learn some real science – most, if not all, forest fires are dangerous because of bad forest management that lets fuel load build up and then there are the green brigade that want to ‘live with nature’ that exacerbate that problem. The sea level rise is a myth or caused by land sinkage. That being said they don’t really have a case for any of the governments to answer.

    The question remains, just who is paying the Court to give its stupid ruling?

  3. Curious George says:

    Isn’t the Paris Accord strictly voluntary?

  4. Curious George says:

    If there is an enforcing mechanism, technically it is a treaty, and as such it has to be ratified by the U.S. Senate. I don’t know the UK legal position after Brexit.

  5. Chaswarnertoo says:

    CO2 is not emissions, it’s life.

  6. oldbrew says:

    The European Court of Human Rights has jurisdiction over the states on this list.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Member_states_of_the_Council_of_Europe#List

  7. Gamecock says:

    “Isn’t the Paris Accord strictly voluntary?”

    Apparently.

  8. dennisambler says:

    “Isn’t the Paris Accord strictly voluntary?”

    No, although it is the popular impression. The UN is in doubt that it is a legally binding treaty, which means Biden can’t re-join without a two thirds Sneate majority, yet he has, seemingly without challenge.

    https://unfccc.int/process-and-meetings/the-paris-agreement/the-paris-agreement

    “The Paris Agreement is a legally binding international treaty on climate change. It was adopted by 196 Parties at COP 21 in Paris, on 12 December 2015 and entered into force on 4 November 2016.

    Its goal is to limit global warming to well below 2, preferably to 1.5 degrees Celsius, compared to pre-industrial levels.

    To achieve this long-term temperature goal, countries aim to reach global peaking of greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible to achieve a climate neutral world by mid-century.

    The Paris Agreement is a landmark in the multilateral climate change process because, for the first time, a binding agreement brings all nations into a common cause to undertake ambitious efforts to combat climate change and adapt to its effects.

    Implementation of the Paris Agreement requires economic and social transformation, based on the best available science. The Paris Agreement works on a 5- year cycle of increasingly ambitious climate action carried out by countries. By 2020, countries submit their plans for climate action known as nationally determined contributions (NDCs).”

    Who is funding the “young activists”?

  9. dennisambler says:

    UN is in NO doubt that it is legally binding….

  10. Ulf says:

    Who gave these kids the mandate to represent all of the people living in these countrys, what I know is no one have asked me if I want to suit my country, the lawsuit is not in my name, or anyone that I know of.
    Another strange thing is to lawsuit anyone for something that haven’t happend yet and no one know if anything will ever happen so how is it even possible to lawsuit?
    Maybe we all living in these countries should suit these kids for trying to ruin the everyday life for the rest of us, why should the majority of people living in europe change there way of life so these kids don’t feel anxiety about the future climate.

  11. oldbrew says:

    Making Paris count
    14th September 2016

    Most fundamentally, the agreement is not legally binding.

    https://www.climate2020.org.uk/making-paris-count/
    – – –
    That doesn’t stop ‘human rights’ cases going ahead. But aren’t judges supposed to apply laws, not impose their own opinions?

  12. Graeme No.3 says:

    Check rising sea levels in Lisbon 1755 or 1531 or 1761 – and resulting tsunamis.

  13. Phoenix44 says:

    It’s a propaganda move, nothing more. The ECHR cannot really do anything nor impose anything much on any government. It has no enforcement mechanism and it’s not at all clear what “human rights” are being infringed by not sticking to a timetable in a treaty. Arguably enforcing bans without consent will more obviously infringe human rights to quiet enjoyment of property.

    If this was serious it would not be at the ECHR – I suspect it was the only court that was willing to look at it.

  14. dennisambler says:

    There still seems to be confusion over whether the Paris Agreement is legally binding.
    The UK United Nations Association says it isn’t, from their web page in 2016, but the UNFCCC says it is, from their web page updated 2021. It seems that parts are, in particular they say the NDC’s are mandatory:

    “To better frame the efforts towards the long-term goal, the Paris Agreement invites countries to formulate and submit by 2020 long-term low greenhouse gas emission development strategies (LT-LEDS).

    LT-LEDS provide the long-term horizon to the NDCs. Unlike NDCs, they are not mandatory. Nevertheless, they place the NDCs into the context of countries’ long-term planning and development priorities, providing a vision and direction for future development.”

    https://www.climate2020.org.uk/making-paris-count/
    https://unfccc.int/process-and-meetings/the-paris-agreement/the-paris-agreement

  15. oldbrew says:

    Climate lawfare in Australia.

    MARCH 1, 2021
    Australian teens lead class action against coal mine expansion

    MELBOURNE (Reuters) – A class action against a coal mine extension that begins on Tuesday could make it more difficult for coal mines to be approved in Australia on the basis of intergenerational equity and climate change, if the claimants prove successful.

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-australia-coal-environment/australian-teens-lead-class-action-against-whitehavens-coal-mine-expansion-idUSKCN2AT1JW

    Who is paying for this copycat nonsense?

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