The following is an event organized by the Environmental Law Institute and explores topics contained in a new book "Climate Justice" featuring chapters authored by ILRP fellows. 

Climate justice can be defined generally as addressing the disproportionate burden of climate change impacts on poor and marginalized communities. It seeks to promote more equitable allocation of the burdens of these impacts at the local, national, and global levels through proactive regulatory initiatives and reactive judicial remedies that draw on international human rights and domestic environmental justice theories. Yet, efforts to define climate justice as a field of inquiry can be elusive and underinclusive because the concept is so vast in scope.

“Climate Justice: Case Studies in Global and Regional Governance Challenges” seeks to fill that void, providing an overview of the landscape of climate justice from a variety of legal and geographic perspectives in a case study format. The book analyzes climate justice from an international law perspective and legal responses to promote climate justice in several regions of the world, including Pacific island nations, South Asia, North America, Africa, and the Middle East. It addresses proposed solutions to a range of regulatory obstacles under international law, U.S. law, and foreign domestic law in seeking to promote climate justice on a global scale.

This seminar will begin with discussions of recent atmospheric trust litigation in the U.S., and the Urgenda case in the Netherlands, as examples of the advantages and limitations of using domestic courts to promote climate justice objectives. It will then address topics outside the litigation context by exploring the climate justice implications of the new differentiation model between developed and developing nations as reflected in the Paris Agreement and the human rights dimensions of global deployment of bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS). Join the editor and three contributing authors of Climate Justice: Case Studies in Global and Regional Governance Challenges to learn about important and timely topics addressed in this recent publication.

Event Speakers

Photo of Wil Burns

Wil Burns

CIGI Senior Fellow

Wil Burns is a CIGI senior fellow with the International Law Research Program, effective July 2015. Until recently, he served as director of the Energy Policy & Climate Program at Johns Hopkins University, and now serves as co-director of the Forum for Climate Engineering Assessment, a scholarly initiative of the School of International Service at American University in Washington, DC.

Photo of Patrícia Galvão Ferreira

Patrícia Galvão Ferreira

CIGI Post-Doctoral Fellow

Patrícia Galvão Ferreira is a post-doctoral fellow with CIGI’s International Law Research Program. While at CIGI, she will research the evolution of transnational regulatory initiatives to address climate change and examine how Canada can contribute to promote compliance among emerging economies with large emissions.

Thematics