top of page

PICAN Submission on "Climate Legislation and Intergenerational Equity"

10 May 2023

PICAN submission to the call for inputs by the Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in the context of climate change on the topic "Climate Legislation and Intergenerational Equity".

Enhancing Climate Change Legislation

  1. Can you provide examples of climate change legislation that incorporates human rights elements, or a reference to obligations relating to loss and damage? The Fiji Government approved its Climate Change Act (2021) (Government of Fiji, 2021)on September 23, 2021. The Climate Change Act (2021) recognises that climate change is a threat to the rights and freedom of Fijians. S.5 of the Climate Change Act (2021) outlines that: (a) when taking action to address climate change, Fiji will respect, promote, and consider the rights and freedoms recognised in Chapter 2 of the Constitution (c) the principle of intergenerational equity, in which the well-being of current and future generations is supported and protected by a socially and gender inclusive, equitable, environmentally sustainable, net zero emissions economy and the health, diversity and productivity of the environment is protected and enhanced for the benefit of current and future generations." Under Part 6 of the Climate Change Act (2021) relating to the development and evaluation of the National Climate Change Policy. S.27 (5) (d) — The National Climate Change Policy must embed gender, human rights, and social and cultural issues. Under Part 12 of the Climate Change Act (2021) relating to Climate Displacement and Relocation S.77 (1) The Minister, with the support of the Fijian Taskforce on Relocation and Displacement, is responsible for relocating and supporting at-risk communities in accordance with the following objectives (j) the adoption of approaches which — (i) are human-centred including prioritising community needs from the bottom up. (iii) are human rights based. Under Part 11 of the Climate Change Act (2021) relating to Climate Change Adaptation and Resilient Development S. 65, "this Act recognises that climate change is a threat to the rights and freedoms recognised in Chapter 2 of the Constitution, and in particular— (a) the right to a clean and healthy environment (b) the right to adequate food and water (c) the right to health (d) the rights of children and persons with disabilities (e) the right to housing and sanitation; and (f) the right to reasonable access to transportation

  2. How do you think climate change legislation should frame a connection to human rights obligations? When framing climate change legislation, incorporating a connection to human rights obligations is crucial in recognizing the profound impact of climate change on people's lives and well-being. Here are some considerations for linking climate change and human rights, with reference to International Conventions: Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR): The UDHR emphasizes the fundamental rights and freedoms that should be protected for all individuals. Climate change legislation should recognize the right to life, health, food, water, and a safe environment, as climate change can threaten these basic human rights. International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR): The ICESCR ensures the protection of economic, social, and cultural rights, including the right to an adequate standard of living, housing, and education. Climate change legislation should aim to mitigate the impacts on vulnerable communities, ensuring access to these rights despite the challenges posed by climate change. International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR): The ICCPR focuses on civil and political rights, such as the right to life, freedom of movement, and participation in decision-making processes. Climate change legislation should safeguard these rights by promoting climate justice, ensuring the involvement of affected communities in decision-making, and providing avenues for redress. Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC): The CRC recognizes the specific vulnerabilities of children and their right to development, health, and a safe environment. Climate change legislation should prioritize the protection of children's rights by addressing climate impacts on their health, education, and future opportunities. Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW): The CEDAW highlights the rights and needs of women in various spheres of life. Climate change legislation should consider the differentiated impacts on women and promote gender equality in climate actions, empowering women to participate in adaptation and mitigation efforts. International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD): The ICERD prohibits racial discrimination and promotes equality. Climate change legislation should recognize the disproportionate impacts of climate change on marginalized communities, including indigenous peoples, and ensure their rights are protected and respected. Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT): The CAT prohibits torture and cruel treatment. Climate change legislation should address situations where climate impacts exacerbate vulnerabilities, leading to human rights abuses, displacement, or forced migration, ensuring protection from such treatment. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD): The CRPD focuses on the rights of persons with disabilities and their inclusion in society. Climate change legislation should consider the specific vulnerabilities faced by individuals with disabilities and ensure their rights are upheld, including accessibility to climate adaptation measures and disaster response systems. International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families (ICMW): The ICMW safeguards the rights of migrant workers and their families. Climate change legislation should address the challenges faced by climate-induced migrants, including displacement, and loss of livelihoods, and ensure their human rights are protected throughout their journey and at their destination. Governments and policymakers must incorporate these human rights obligations into climate change legislation, emphasizing the importance of equitable and just responses to climate change, safeguarding the well-being and dignity of all individuals, especially those most vulnerable to its impacts. The efforts by the Government of Vanuatu and 18 champion nations to seek an advisory opinion from the International Court of Justice (ICJ AO) on “what are the obligations of States under international law to ensure the protection of the climate system and other parts of the environment from anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases for States and for present and future generations”, saw 132 co-sponsoring states at the UN General Assembly in March 2022. This has sent a strong and unambiguous signal that nations are united in their commitment to abide by existing climate obligations under international law and to successful international climate cooperation.

  3. How do you think climate change legislation should engage the concept of loss and damage? Engaging the concept of climate-induced loss and damage in climate change legislation is crucial for addressing the impacts of climate change on vulnerable communities and ensuring a just and equitable transition to a sustainable future. Here are some key considerations for incorporating this concept into climate change legislation: a. Recognition and Definition: Climate change legislation should explicitly recognize the concept of climate-induced loss and damage as a distinct component of climate change impacts. It should provide a comprehensive definition of loss and damage that encompasses both economic and non-economic losses, such as loss of lives, livelihoods, ecosystems, cultural heritage, and human rights. b. Assessing and Monitoring: The legislation should establish mechanisms for assessing and monitoring loss and damage at various scales, including local, regional, and national levels. Robust monitoring systems can help identify vulnerable areas and communities most affected by climate impacts, ensuring targeted interventions and adaptation measures. A key challenge in the climate and development world is the type of knowledge and knowledge products that are being valued to inform the development of climate legislation and policies. There are not sufficient efforts to ensure that traditional knowledge products are being considered, especially given the scale of the Non-Economic Loss and Damage that frontline communities are experiencing. d. Financial Support: Climate change legislation should include provisions for financial support mechanisms to address loss and damage. This may involve establishing dedicated funds, such as climate risk insurance schemes or climate adaptation funds, to provide financial assistance for vulnerable communities and countries experiencing significant loss and damage. One of the major gaps in addressing loss and damage (LD) caused by climate change is the funding mechanism. Currently, through existing climate mechanisms, such as the Green Climate Fund (GCF), the projects that are funded tend to primarily focus on public capital projects and do not adequately support the communities and individuals who are at the forefront of climate-induced Loss and Damage (for e.g., funds do not fund Non-Economic Loss and Damage related initiatives). The responsibility for addressing LD still falls on communities, who are already in urgent need of assistance. It is crucial to allocate funds specifically for communities that can demonstrate the non-economic impacts resulting from loss and damage, such as loss of land or displacement due to coastal erosion, like in the case of countries such as Kiribati. Therefore, the development of policies and legislation that clearly distinguish between climate finance and loss and damage funds and specify how the latter should be utilized becomes crucial in achieving meaningful outcomes e. Just Transition and Equity: Climate change legislation should ensure that the burden of loss and damage is not disproportionately borne by vulnerable and marginalized communities. It should promote equitable and just approaches to address loss and damage, considering the differential impacts on various social groups and providing targeted support to those most affected. The recent call by six Pacific Islands countries for an equitable and just transition to a Fossil Fuel Free Pacific (Pacific Islands Climate Action Network, 2023) is a great example of regional cooperation and commitment to ensure that any transition is embedded in the principles of equity, justice, and human rights. f. International Cooperation: Climate change is a global challenge, and international cooperation is essential to address loss and damage effectively. Climate change legislation should encourage collaboration between countries, sharing of best practices, and provision of technical and financial assistance to developing nations experiencing severe loss and damage. Further, the world must adopt a definition and international legislation on Loss and Damage, that sees climate-induced Loss and Damage as a threat to people's entire sovereignty and their fundamental human rights.

  4. Should climate change legislation that incorporates loss and damage be different for major greenhouse gas-emitting countries to those that are most affected by climate change? What would this difference look like? The question of whether climate change legislation should differ for major greenhouse gas-emitting countries and those most affected by climate change is a complex one. It involves considerations of responsibility, equity, intergenerational justice, and the need for collective global action. While there is no one-size-fits-all answer, we can provide some perspectives on this issue. a. Common But Differentiated Responsibilities: Major greenhouse gas-emitting countries, often industrialized nations, have historically contributed significantly to global greenhouse gas emissions. They have a greater responsibility to take action to mitigate climate change. Therefore, legislation for these countries may focus on reducing emissions, transitioning to renewable energy sources, and implementing stricter regulations on emissions-intensive industries, keeping with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities. As a start, developed and high-emitting countries must explicitly include the language of Loss and Damage in their own legislations and policies, in efforts to pay their fair shares, as reparations to climate frontline countries and communities. b. Adaptation and Resilience: Countries that are predominantly affected by climate change, particularly developing nations, and small island states, often face disproportionate impacts and vulnerabilities. Legislation for these countries might prioritize adaptation and resilience measures, such as infrastructure improvements, disaster risk reduction, and capacity-building programs. These efforts aim to enhance their ability to cope with the adverse effects of climate change. c. Financial Support: Firstly, the mobilisation of finance should be led by developed countries acting morally in response to loss and grief and with a view to build trust in climate cooperation which is threatened by mistrust, defiance, and unbalanced power dynamics. It should be guided by principles of international cooperation and solidarity; historical responsibility and the polluter pays principle. Major emitting countries can play a crucial role in supporting developing nations through financial assistance. Legislation for major emitters may include provisions for financial contributions to help fund adaptation and mitigation efforts in vulnerable countries. This support can be in the form of climate finance, technology transfer, and capacity-building assistance. d. Loss and Damage Mechanisms: Incorporating loss and damage mechanisms in climate change legislation is essential for addressing the irreversible impacts of climate change that cannot be mitigated or adapted to. Legislation for major emitters may include provisions that establish mechanisms for addressing loss and damage, such as insurance programs, compensation funds, or liability frameworks. These mechanisms can assist affected countries in recovering and adapting to the long-term consequences of climate change. e. International Cooperation: Given the global nature of climate change, international cooperation is vital. Legislation for major emitters should prioritize participation in international climate agreements and initiatives. Collaboration, technology sharing, and capacity-building efforts between major emitters and affected countries can help foster a collective response to climate change. With respect to the mobilisation of climate finance on the basis of international cooperation and solidarity, it should be guided by the principle of CBRD-RC under the Convention and its Paris Agreement. CBRD-RC under the Convention and its Paris Agreement (especially as reflected in the commitments under Art. 4 of the UNFCCC and the corresponding provisions under the PA) reflect the historical responsibility and polluter pays principle that developed countries have the responsibility to provide such finance.

Supporting Climate Legislation

  1. How are human rights considerations being incorporated into climate change litigation? Incorporating human rights considerations into climate change litigation continues to be an emerging set of work in the Pacific, where climate change litigation involves linking climate change impacts to violations of specific human rights and seeking legal remedies. This includes seeking compensation, policy changes, or court orders to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change. In the Pacific, there have been some notable developments related to climate change litigation and human rights. For example, in 2018, a group of Torres Strait Islanders in Australia filed a complaint with the United Nations Human Rights Committee (European Journal of International Law, 2023), arguing that the Australian government's inaction on climate change violated their rights.

  2. Are there issues with making the link between human rights and climate change litigation? While the connection between human rights and climate change is increasingly recognised, the legal framework for addressing these issues is complex and still evolving. Causation and Attribution: Establishing a direct causal link between climate change and specific human rights violations can be challenging. Climate change impacts are often gradual and occur over long-time frames, making it difficult to attribute specific events solely to climate change. Additionally, identifying responsibility for climate change-related harms can be complex, as multiple actors contribute to greenhouse gas emissions. Legal Framework: Human rights law and environmental law have traditionally been separate legal domains, and bridging the two in the context of climate change litigation can be intricate. Climate change is a global issue, and the responsibility for mitigating its effects extends beyond national borders. This poses challenges in terms of jurisdiction and accountability. Remedies and Redress: Even if a causal link can be established, determining appropriate remedies and redress for climate change-related human rights violations can be complex. Traditional legal mechanisms may not be fully equipped to address the wide-ranging and systemic impacts of climate change, and there may be limitations in terms of available legal remedies. Capacity and Resources: Many Pacific Island nations face significant challenges in terms of capacity and resources to engage in climate change litigation. These nations often have limited legal infrastructure and financial resources to pursue complex legal cases, making it difficult for them to advocate for their rights in international forums. Despite these challenges, there have been notable efforts to link human rights and climate change in the Pacific. For instance, some Pacific Island nations have pursued legal avenues to raise awareness about the impacts of climate change and advocate for stronger climate action on the basis of human rights. Additionally, international organisations and NGOs have supported these efforts by providing legal assistance and raising awareness about the human rights dimensions of climate change in the Pacific.

  3. What do you think are the major barriers to initiating climate change litigation? There are several major barriers to initiating climate change litigation. These barriers can vary depending on the specific jurisdiction and circumstances, but below are some common challenges: Legal Standing: One of the primary barriers to climate change litigation is establishing legal standing. To bring a case to court, plaintiffs must demonstrate that they have a sufficient legal interest in the matter and have suffered or will suffer specific harm as a result of climate change. In some jurisdictions, it may be difficult for individuals or communities in the Pacific to meet the strict legal standing requirements, especially when trying to hold distant actors or governments accountable for their contributions to climate change. Jurisdictional Challenges: Climate change is a global issue that requires international cooperation and coordination. However, determining the appropriate jurisdiction to file a lawsuit can be complex. In the Pacific, where multiple countries and territories are involved, determining which court or legal system has jurisdiction over a climate change case can be challenging. This jurisdictional complexity can delay or complicate the litigation process. Resource Constraints: Climate change litigation can be expensive and time-consuming. It requires financial resources, legal expertise, and evidence gathering, all of which can be limited in Pacific Island nations with small economies and limited legal capacity. Lack of access to funding, legal representation, and technical expertise can make it difficult for plaintiffs to pursue climate change litigation effectively. Burden of Proof: Establishing a direct causal link between the actions of specific entities and the harm suffered by Pacific Island communities can be a significant challenge. Climate change impacts often result from a combination of natural phenomena and human activities spanning multiple decades and regions. Proving causation and attributing responsibility to specific actors can be complex and require extensive scientific evidence, which can be difficult to obtain and present in court. Political and Diplomatic Factors: Climate change litigation can involve disputes against powerful entities, such as governments or multinational corporations. These entities may have strong political influence and resources to defend themselves legally. Political considerations and diplomatic relationships between Pacific Island nations and other countries may impact the willingness of local courts to hear climate change cases, especially when the defendants are foreign entities. Precedent and Legal Framework: Climate change litigation is a relatively new and evolving field of law. There may be a lack of established legal precedents and frameworks specifically tailored to addressing climate change impacts in the Pacific context. This can create uncertainty and make it more challenging for plaintiffs to build their cases and convince courts to recognize their claims. Alternative Avenues for Redress: Some argue that pursuing litigation may not be the most effective or efficient means of addressing climate change impacts. Other avenues, such as policy advocacy, negotiation, or international climate agreements, may be considered more appropriate or promising for addressing the complex and systemic nature of climate change.

  4. Are the barriers different in different parts of the world? What are they? -

  5. Is the judiciary in your country well-equipped to understand the connection between human rights and climate change? -

  6. How could this be improved? -

  7. Are there particular issues with getting access to the courts? -

Advancement of the principle of intergenerational justice
  1. What examples do you have of how intergenerational justice, as it applies to climate change and human rights, has been incorporated into international law, national constitutions, or domestic law? Fiji’s National Climate Change Act has embedded the principle of intergenerational equity as one of its guiding principles. S.5 of the Climate Change Act (2021) outlines that: This Act must be implemented in accordance with the following principles — (c) the principle of intergenerational equity, in which the well-being of current and future generations is supported and protected by a socially and gender inclusive, equitable, environmentally sustainable, net zero emissions economy and the health, diversity and productivity of the environment is protected and enhanced for the benefit of current and future generations”.

  2. How would you best define intergenerational justice in the context of climate change and human rights? Intergenerational justice, in the context of climate change and human rights, refers to the ethical principle that present generations have a responsibility to ensure the well-being and rights of future generations. It recognizes that the actions and decisions we make today regarding climate change can have profound consequences for the quality of life and rights of future generations. When discussing intergenerational justice in relation to climate change and human rights, several key aspects come into play: Climate Change: Climate change refers to long-term shifts in weather patterns caused primarily by human activities, such as the burning of fossil fuels, deforestation, and industrial processes. The consequences of climate change, including rising temperatures, sea-level rise, extreme weather events, and ecosystem disruptions, pose significant threats to human rights, such as the rights to life, health, food, water, housing, and a clean environment. Human Rights: Human rights are fundamental entitlements and freedoms that every person should possess, regardless of their nationality, ethnicity, gender, or any other characteristic. These rights include civil, political, economic, social, and cultural rights. Climate change impacts can exacerbate human rights violations, disproportionately affecting marginalized communities, indigenous peoples, and vulnerable populations who are often least responsible for the causes of climate change. Responsibility: Intergenerational justice recognizes that present generations bear a responsibility to address climate change and protect human rights for future generations. This involves developed, historic emitters and high-emitting countries taking proactive measures to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, adapt to the impacts of climate change, and ensure equitable access to resources and opportunities. Sustainable Development: Achieving intergenerational justice requires pursuing sustainable development, which seeks to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Sustainable development involves integrating environmental, social, and economic considerations into decision-making processes to promote long-term well-being and intergenerational equity. It is essential to promote international cooperation, develop effective climate policies and strategies, foster sustainable practices, support clean and renewable energy sources, the immediate and rapid phase-out of fossil fuel infrastructures, enhance resilience, and prioritise the rights of vulnerable communities.

  3. Has the concept of intergenerational justice been incorporated into climate change litigation? -

  4. What options are available for enshrining the principle of intergenerational justice in international law? Enshrining the principle of intergenerational justice in international law, in the context of climate change, can be pursued through various options. While there is no universally agreed-upon approach, here are some potential avenues that could be explored: International Treaties: Governments can negotiate and adopt international treaties that explicitly recognize and prioritize intergenerational justice in relation to climate change. These treaties can establish binding obligations for states to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, adapt to the impacts of climate change, and preserve natural resources for future generations. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and its Paris Agreement are examples of existing international treaties that address climate change, though they may require further emphasis on intergenerational justice. Customary International Law: Over time, customary international law can emerge through consistent state practice and the recognition of legal obligations by the international community. By advocating for the principle of intergenerational justice in forums like the International Court of Justice (ICJ), states and civil society organizations can help establish customary norms that recognize the rights of future generations in the context of climate change. An example of this work is the initiative by the Pacific islands led-global campaign led by the Government of Vanuatu, the Pacific Islands Students Fighting Climate Change, and Pacific and global civil society organizations to seek an advisory opinion on human rights and climate change (intergenerational equity) from the International Court of Justice. Declarations and Principles: Governments, intergovernmental organizations, and civil society groups can issue declarations and principles that explicitly incorporate intergenerational justice into climate change policies. These documents, while not legally binding, can exert moral and political pressure and serve as a foundation for future legal developments. Regional Agreements: Regional organizations can develop agreements that promote intergenerational justice within their respective regions. These agreements can include commitments to reduce emissions, enhance resilience, and prioritize sustainable development with the long-term well-being of future generations in mind. Regional frameworks for instance can be adopted through regional forums such as the Pacific Islands Forum, could exemplify regional initiatives aimed at addressing climate change and sustainability. Domestic Legislation: Individual countries can incorporate the principle of intergenerational justice into their domestic legislation related to climate change. By enacting laws that promote sustainable development, regulate emissions, protect natural resources, and integrate intergenerational equity considerations, governments can set an example and create legal frameworks that prioritize the rights of future generations. Establishing intergenerational justice as a fundamental principle in international law requires significant political will, collaboration, and advocacy from governments, civil society organizations, and individuals. It will likely be a gradual process involving a combination of legal instruments, norm-building efforts, and raising awareness about the importance of considering future generations in climate change decision-making.

  5. How can States incorporate the concept of intergenerational justice in their national constitutions and legislation? What are some good practices in that respect? Incorporating the concept of intergenerational justice in national constitutions and legislation is crucial for addressing the challenges of climate change. By recognizing the rights and responsibilities of current and future generations, states can create a legal framework that promotes sustainable development and ensures the well-being of future populations. Some ways states can incorporate intergenerational justice in the context of climate change are through: Preamble or Declaration of Principles: States can include a preamble or declaration in their constitution that explicitly recognizes the importance of intergenerational justice and the responsibility to protect the environment for future generations. This sets the tone for the entire constitution and highlights the commitment to sustainable development. An example is Fiji’s Climate Change Act (2021) which recognises the principle of intergenerational equity as one of the guiding principles of the Act. Environmental Rights: Constitutions can include provisions that recognize the right to a clean and healthy environment for present and future generations. This helps establish a legal basis for protecting the environment and ensuring the well-being of future populations. Good practices in this respect include countries like Aotearoa New Zealand's Te Awa Tupua (Whanganui River) Act (Maori Law Review, 2014) where the river is recognized as a legal entity with its own rights, including the right to health and well-being. Precautionary Principle: States can adopt the precautionary principle as a guiding principle in their legislation. This principle states that in the face of scientific uncertainty, actions should be taken to prevent harm to the environment and future generations. It encourages decision-makers to err on the side of caution when it comes to activities that may have long-term negative impacts. Future Impact Assessments: States can require comprehensive future impact assessments for projects, policies, and legislation that may have significant environmental implications. These assessments should evaluate the long-term consequences of actions on future generations, including climate change impacts. Intergenerational Advisory Councils: Establishing intergenerational advisory councils or similar bodies can ensure that the perspectives and interests of future generations are taken into account in decision- making processes. These councils can provide recommendations and advice on policies and legislation related to climate change and sustainability. Education and Awareness: States can emphasize the importance of environmental education and awareness by integrating it into their education systems. By educating current and future generations about the impacts of climate change and their responsibility to address it, states can foster a sense of intergenerational justice.

  6. Can you share some good practices that allow youth to be represented in courts and to have their views and concerns properly expressed in the judicial process? Ensuring youth representation and expression of views and concerns in the judicial process regarding climate change is crucial for fostering a more inclusive and sustainable future. Some good practices to facilitate youth representation in courts and enable their voices to be heard effectively are: Youth Advisory Councils/ Youth Parliament/ Model UN: Establish youth advisory councils or panels specifically focused on climate change. These councils can serve as a platform for young people to provide input, insights, and recommendations to the judiciary, helping to shape policies and decisions. Furthermore, initiatives such as the model UN and youth Parliaments can be a platform for young people to highlight issues of climate change and human rights and propose recommendations to policymakers. Youth Legal Clinics: Set up youth-focused legal clinics that provide free or affordable legal advice and assistance to young individuals and organizations working on climate change issues. These clinics can help ensure that youth have access to legal resources and can effectively navigate the judicial system. Amicus Curiae Briefs: Encourage the submission of amicus curiae briefs by youth-led organizations and advocacy groups. These briefs can present youth perspectives, research, and recommendations to assist the court in making informed decisions. For instance, the Legal Handbook developed by the Pacific Islands Students Fighting Climate Change (Pacific Islands Students Fighting Climate Change, 2023), aims to be the single most authoritative legal document that would guide the youth and civil society campaign in the second phase of the ICJ campaign. It also aims to contribute to the preparations of states and intergovernmental organisations in their submissions before the ICJ. Educational Outreach: Conduct educational outreach programs targeting schools, universities, and youth organizations to increase awareness about the judicial process and climate change issues. Educating young people about their rights, legal avenues, and the importance of civic engagement can empower them to participate effectively in court proceedings. Youth-Centric Language and Communication: Use language and communication strategies that are accessible and inclusive for young people. This includes using plain language, visual aids, and multimedia tools to convey complex legal concepts and processes. Mentoring Programs: Establish mentoring programs that pair young climate activists or concerned individuals with legal professionals who can guide them through the legal system. This mentorship can empower youth, build legal capacity, and strengthen their ability to represent their views effectively. Technology and Virtual Platforms: Leverage technology and virtual platforms to facilitate youth participation in court proceedings. This can include videoconferencing for remote testimonies, online submission of statements, and live-streaming court proceedings to enhance transparency and accessibility.


Government of Fiji, 2021. Fiji Climate Change Portal. [Online]

Pacific Islands Climate Action Network, 2023. Port Vila Call for a Just Transition to a Fossil Fuel Free Pacific. [Online]

Pacific Islands Students Fighting Climate Change, 2023. Youth Climate Justice Handbook. [Online] Available at: 244781596/Summary+for+Policymakers+%7C+Part+1+%7C+Youth+Climate+Justice+Handbook.pdf [Accessed 23 May 2023].

Maori Law Review, 2014. Ruruku Whakatupua Te Mana o te Awa Tupua – Upholding the Mana of the Whanganui River. [Online]

[Accessed 24 May 2023].

Republic of Fiji Government, 2021. The Laws of Fiji. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 25 May 2023].

European Journal of International Law, 2023. Torres Strait Islanders: United Nations Human Rights Committee Delivers Ground-Breaking Decision on Climate Change Impacts on Human Rights. [Online] Available at: delivers-ground-breaking-decision-on-climate-change-impacts-on-human- rights/#:~:text=In%20a%20landmark%20decision%20the,on%20Civil%20and%20Political%20Rights.


Download the full submission:

[Final] PICAN Submission — Climate Legislation and Intergenerational Equity
Download PDF • 389KB

bottom of page