The Quest for Cosmopolitan Justice in Climate Matters
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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- Faculty of Law 
At a time when climate litigation is soaring worldwide, some recurrent patterns among legal systems allow for a brief reflection on cosmopolitan justice. In a recent strand of cases (Urgenda, Leghari, Juliana v. Unites States and Earthlife), different courts have reached climate-protective rulings by applying constitutional provisions, along with international principles and treaty norms. Until the first case was rendered in 2015, such interpretive technique was unprecedented in the field of climate change litigation. Yet, it appears to be well-founded in international law, instrumental for its enforcement and replicable across legal systems. None of the cases reviewed are final, yet they all appear to have precipitated a process of public reasoning at the national and international levels, as well as policy change under some circumstances. While access to justice is notably absent from the international climate change regime, individuals and NGOs are currently vindicating it before national courts.