Globalisation & Law Network seminar with Christina Eckes

On 6 June 2024, the Globalisation & Law Network held a seminar featuring Dr. Christina Eckes, Professor of European Law at the University of Amsterdam. Professor Eckes’ talk was based on her forthcoming article titled “European Law in Strategic Climate Litigation: An Obstacle to National Mitigation Actions?”. The article advances a powerful critique of national courts which use EU law as a shield to reject actions brought by individuals and civil society organisations. Liam Siry acted as a discussant. 

To set the scene, Professor Eckes identified various substantive gaps in EU climate change law. At the same time, she acknowledged that it remains challenging to contest inadequate climate strategies and targets directly before EU courts. The Plaumann criteria for direct and individual concern in the context of actions for annulment are extremely stringent. Indirect challenges through preliminary rulings are equally problematic since national courts do not have an obligation to send requests for such rulings, and the CJEU can only deal with questions of law and not of fact. As a result, interested parties choose to litigate before domestic courts of Member States. Yet they also face numerous obstacles. Professor Eckes delved into the case studies of climate limitation before Czech, Spanish, Italian, and Belgian national courts. The talk also addressed some of the most recent developments in the field of climate change law, namely the ECtHR’s judgment in KlimaSeniorinnen.

If you are interested in the intersection of law and the globalised world, we invite you to join our upcoming seminars organised by the Globalisation & Law Network. Stay updated on our program and register here.

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