Older women from Switzerland won landmark climate victory in the European Court of Human Rights

In 2020, the KlimaSeniorinnen, or Senior Women for Climate Protection – hailed “climate seniors” in the media – took the Swiss government to the European Court of Human Rights because their health has been threatened by heat waves exacerbated by the climate crisis.

On April 9, 2024, the European Court found a violation of the right to respect for private and family life (Article 8), which encompasses a right to effective protection by the State authorities from the serious adverse effects of climate change on lives, health, well-being and quality of life. While recognizing that national authorities enjoy wide discretion concerning the implementation of legislation and measures, the Court decided that the Swiss authorities had not acted in time and in an appropriate manner to plan and implement relevant legislation and measures in this case. “It is clear that future generations are likely to bear an increasingly severe burden of the consequences of present failures and omissions to combat climate change,” said Court President Siofra O’Leary.  The court’s ruling on the state’s involvement in climate change mitigation is unprecedented.

More information: https://climatecasechart.com/non-us-case/union-of-swiss-senior-women-for-climate-protection-v-swiss-federal-council-and-others/