The Role of the Courts in the Field of Climate Change in China A legal study drawing inspiration from climate litigation developments in other jurisdictions
PhD student: Mrs X. Xu
Promotors: Mrs Dr M.G.W.M. Peeters, Mrs Prof E.I.L. Vos
Duration: 1/1/2021 - 31/12/2024
China has announced the goals of Emission Peaking ultimately by 2030 and Carbon Neutrality ultimately by 2060, and implemented its climate policy through administrative means. Despite this, the Climate Change Law is still absent, and Carbon Neutrality or Net-zero Carbon Dioxide Emission are not included in environmental laws as emission reduction goals. Environmental academics appeal to protect citizens' climate interests and to hold private companies liable for their greenhouse gas emission. In the meanwhile, the public also expect to have a clear mandate to monitor the emission activities of companies. This research explores how and to what extent Chinese environmental courts could adjudicate climate related claims, comparing the state of affairs of the possibility of climate litigation in china with the development of climate litigation across the globe, and identifying core differences and similarities. First, the research explores which Chinese laws are directly and indirectly relevant for addressing climate change. Secondly, relevant climate litigation related to regulatory approaches addressing climate change in other jurisdictions will be identified. Thirdly, it will be analyzed whether these developments provide insights for case law development in China. Drawing from those findings, this research is expected to propose reasoned changes of the legal framework for litigation in China to address climate change.