Available in Russian
Author: Alexander Solntsev
Keywords: climate change; climate disputes; climate refugees; Committee of Human Rights; human rights treaty bodies
In this article, the author aims to show the growing importance of international environmental disputes, especially the category of international climate disputes that have “splashed out” from national courts and are actively conquering international judicial and quasi-judicial institutions. The article demonstrated that the human rights treaty bodies possessing quasi-judicial powers, having evolved the basis for consideration of disputes on human rights violations in connection with climate change, have now begun to consider them directly. The View of the UN Human Rights Committee on the case of Teitiota v. New Zealand (2020) is analyzed in detail. Although it is not recognized that New Zealand violated the right to life of a citizen of Kiribati by sending him home, it is clearly stated that in slightly different circumstances, such refoulement could lead to a violation of the right to life. Based on the analysis performed, it was possible to make some preliminary generalizations about the potential impact of the legal positions of the Human Rights Committee on the subsequent consideration of climate claims in international judicial and quasi-judicial institutions, as well as on the evolutive interpretation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the expansion of the range of rights guaranteed by it.
About the author: Alexander Solntsev – Candidate of Sciences (Ph.D.) in Law, Associate Professor, Deputy Head of the Department of International Law in Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia, Moscow, Russia.
Citation: Solntsev A. (2020) Priotkryvaya yashchik Pandory: analiz mneniya Komiteta po pravam cheloveka o “klimaticheskikh” bezhentsakh 2020 goda [Half-opening Pandora’s box: review of the Human Rights Committee’s 2020 view on climate refugees]. Mezhdunarodnoe pravosudie, vol.10, no.3, pp.41–54. (In Russian).
Abashidze A.Kh., Koneva A.E. (2015) Dogovornye organy po pravam cheloveka: uchebnoe posobie [Human rights treaty bodies: a study guide], 2nd ed., Moscow: Rossiyskiy universitet druzhby narodov. (In Russian).
Bodansky D. (2017) The Role of the International Court of Justice in Addressing Climate Change: Some Preliminary Reflections. Arizona State Law Journal, vol.49, pp.689–712.
Boklan D. (2014) Praktika razresheniya Mezhdunarodnym Sudom OON sporov, vytekayushchikh iz mezhdunarodnykh ekologicheskikh i mezhdunarodnykh ekonomicheskikh otnosheniy [Jurisprudence of the International Court of Justice on disputes concerning international environmental and international economic relations]. Mezhdunarodnoe pravosudie, vol.4, no.2, pp.99–105. (In Russian).
Burger M., Wentz J., Horton R. (2020) The Law and Science of Climate Change Attribution. Columbia Journal of Environmental Law, vol.45, no.1, pp.60–240.
Koneva A.E., Gugunskiy D.A. (2019) Protivodeystvie izmeneniyu klimata i deyatel'nost' dogovornykh organov po pravam cheloveka [Combating climate change and the activities of the human rights treaty bodies]. Evraziyskiy yuridicheskiy zhurnal, vol.138, no.11, pp.353–356. (In Russian).
Kiselyova E.V. (2018) Mezhdunarodno-pravovoe regulirovanie migratsii: uchebnoe posobie dlya vuzov [International legal regulation of migration: a study guide for universities], 3rd ed., Moscow: Yurayt. (In Russian).
Leijten I. (2019) Human Rights v. Insufficient Climate Action: The Urgenda Case. Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights, vol.37, no.2, рp.112–118.
Lehmen A. (2018) International Environmental Court. In: Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Law. Available at: https://opil.ouplaw.com/view/10.1093/law-mpeipro/e1722.013.1722/law-mpeipro-e1722 (accessed: 28.08.2020).
Maljean-Dubois S. (2019) Climate Change Litigation. In: Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Law. Available at: https://opil.ouplaw.com/view/10.1093/law-mpeipro/e3461.013.3461/law-mpeipro-e3461?rskey=wl945c&result=1&prd=OPIL (accessed: 28.08.2020).
Medvedieva M. (2012) Razreshenie sporov v oblasti okhrany okruzhayushchey sredy v kontekste fragmentatsii sovremennogo mezhdunarodnogo prava [Settlement of environmental disputes in a context of fragmentation of modern international law]. Mezhdunarodnoe pravosudie, vol.2, no.3, pp.71–79. (In Russian).
Pedersen O.W. (2012) An International Environmental Court and International Legalism. Journal of Environmental Law, vol.24, no.3, pp.547–558.
Peeters M. (2016) Urgenda Foundation and 886 Individuals v. The State of the Netherlands: The Dilemma of More Ambitious Greenhouse Gas Reduction Action by EU Member States. Review of European, Comparative & International Environmental Law, vol.25, no.1, pp.123–129.
Cordonier Segger M.C., Weeramantry J.C.G. (eds.) (2017) Sustainable Development Principles in the Decisions of International Courts and Tribunals 1992–2012, London: Routledge.
Smbatyan A.S. (2013) Sderzhit li VTO “nashestvie” tyuleney v ES? [Will the WTO deter the “invasion” of seals in the EU?]. Evraziyskiy yuridicheskiy zhurnal, vol.61, no.6, pp.45–51. (In Russian).
Solntsev A. (2019) The International Environmental Court – A Necessary Institution for Sustainable Planetary Governance in the Anthropocene. In: Lim M. (ed.) Charting Environmental Law Futures in the Anthropocene, Singapore: Springer Nature, pp.129–138.
Solntsev A., Mzhavanadze G. (2013) Perspektivy razresheniya Mezhdunarodnym Sudom OON dela “O kitoboynom promysle v Antarktike” (Avstraliya protiv Yaponii) [Prospects for Resolving the International Court of Justice Case “On Bout Whaling in the Antarctic” (Australia v. Japan)]. Mezhdunarodnoe pravosudie, vol.3, no.2, pp.25–31. (In Russian).
Solntsev A.M. (2016) Ekologicheskie prava cheloveka po mezhdunarodnomu paktu ob ekonomicheskikh, sotsial'nykh i kul'turnykh pravakh [Environmental human rights under the international pact on economic, social and cultural rights]. Voprosy ekonomiki i prava, no.5, pp.38–44. (In Russian).
Solntsev A.M. (2018) Izmenenie klimata: mezhdunarodno-pravovoe izmerenie [Climate change: international legal dimension]. Moskovskiy zhurnal mezhdunarodnogo prava, no.1, pp.60–78. (In Russian).
Tabau A.-S. (2019) Climate Change Compliance Procedures. In: Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Law. Available at: https://opil.ouplaw.com/view/10.1093/law-mpeipro/e3511.013.3511/law-mpeipro-e3511 (accessed: 28.08.2020).
Timofeev M.T. (2019) Kak ustroeny mezhdunarodnye sudy: prakticheskoe rukovodstvo dlya zhurnalistov [How are international courts arranged: a practical guide for journalists], Moscow: Institut prava i publichnoy politiki. (In Russian).
Vasil'eva A.A. (2018) Mezhdunarodno-pravovye posledstviya ischeznoveniya territoriy gosudarstv: Dis. … kand. yurid. nauk [International legal consequences of disappearance of territories of states: Cand. in law sci. diss.], Moscow. (In Russian).
Voigt C. (ed.) (2019) International Judicial Practice on the Environment: Questions of Legitimacy, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Voigt C., Makuch Z. (eds.) (2018) Courts and the Environment, Cheltenham; Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar Publishing Limited.