On Friday 11 November 2016, Track 0 co-hosted a Climate Litigation Roundtable as part of Climate Law and Governance Day 2016, a COP22 side event organised by the Centre for International Sustainable Development Law and the Centre for International Governance Innovation.
Track 0 partnered with the Columbia University Sabin Centre for Climate Change Law in bringing together lawyers from around the world to discuss the role of climate litigation in the post-Paris world. The Roundtable focused legal minds on climate litigation and stimulated discussion that will contribute to global climate litigation momentum.
Farhana Yamin, CEO and Founder of Track 0, chaired the session and provided an overview of climate litigation to date, discussed essential components for future cases to succeed, and highlighted opportunities and challenges going forward.
The session’s expert speakers included Stephen Leonard from the Climate Justice Programme, who discussed the concept of climate justice; Michael Burger from the Sabin Centre, who examined global climate litigation trends; and Alyssa Johl, an independent attorney, who discussed the role of human rights and corporate climate accountability.
In an exciting climate litigation development, Elizabeth Brown, an attorney at Our Children’s Trust, was able to present on the historic decision of Judge Ann Aiken in the Federal Court in Eugene, Oregon, released 10 November 2016, rejecting the US Government and fossil fuel industry’s arguments to dismiss youth plaintiffs’ constitutional and public trust claims.
The Roundtable was met with wide-swept agreement that climate litigation has an essential role to play in the Post-Paris world. It sparked a high level of discussion among participants, which continued on after the session and into the next day, where Rosa Winter, Track 0 Lawyer, spoke in a report-back session to COP22 participants.
The presentation slides from the event can be found here.