Publication - Climate Change Mitigation as an Obligation under Human Rights Treaties?

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Title
Climate Change Mitigation as an Obligation under Human Rights Treaties?
Publisher
Cambridge University Press
Author
Benoit Mayer
Published in
March 2021
Abstract
Judges and scholars have interreted human rights treaties as the source of an obligation of States to mitigate climate change y limiting their greenhouse gas emissions, a thesis instrumental to the development of climate litigation. This article questions the validity of this interpretation of human rights treaties. A State's treaty obligation to protect human rights implies an obligation to cooperate on the mitigation of climate change, the article argues, only if and inasmuch as climate change mitigation may effectively protect the enjoyment of treaty rights by individuals within the State's territory or under its jurisdiction. As such, human rights treaties open only some narrow windows on the applicability of general mitigation obligations arising under climate treaties and customary international law.


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