European Organizations Push for Clean Climate as a Human Right

Kamilia de la Cruz
1 min read

A coalition of over 300 organizations has urged the Council of Europe to implement an additional protocol for the European Convention on Human Rights, establishing the right to a clean, healthy, and sustainable environment. This comes ahead of a pivotal opinion by the European Court of Human Rights focusing on member states' obligations to combat climate change. The coalition emphasized the imperative need for a unified approach to interpretation and implementation of this right. The letter coincides with an upcoming ruling on a case alleging non-compliance with the Paris Agreement by 33 Signatory States. Despite the legally binding nature of the Paris Agreement, its enforcement remains untested. The organizations underscored the increasing impact of environmental degradation on human rights and anticipate a surge in related cases at the European Court of Human Rights. The letter questions the confidence in the success of the ongoing case attempting to enforce the Paris Agreement through the European Convention on Human Rights, denoting the serious future effects of climate change. Notably, it also coincides with a forthcoming advisory opinion by the International Court of Justice on the obligations of states in preventing climate change, indicating efforts to enhance legal liability for climate change internationally and at the state level.

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