International law needs to develop to keep pace with climate change.
It is creating new legal challenges for countries and communities, including unavoidable climate change-related loss and damage.
The biggest challenge globally is to agree and design a fair and effective new climate change agreement, which will involve tackling issues that have never been tackled before.
Finding solutions should involve exploring new ideas and considering lessons from different areas of law. Transitional justice is one area that may provide lessons and ideas for climate change.
Transitional justice refers to processes and mechanisms used in countries and societies that are trying to make a transition from violent conflict or large-scale human rights abuses to peace and reconciliation.
It includes criminal prosecutions, truth processes, reparations for victims and governance reforms.
There are great differences between most of the climate change-related challenges referred to here and the terrible situations faced by countries and communities that are trying to confront and move forward from conflict and violence, but experience and ideas from transitional justice could help develop responses to climate change, including at the global level.
There are also areas where transitional justice is directly relevant to climate change-related challenges.
For the complete article, please see Responding to Climate Change.
The mission of the Munich Security Conference is to “address the world’s most pressing security concerns”. These days, that means climate security: climate change is the ultimate threat multiplier, and anyone discussing food security, political instability, migration, or competition over resources should be aware of the climate change pressures that are so often at the root of security problems.
The European Green Deal has made the environment and climate change the focus of EU action. Indeed, climate change impacts are already increasing the pressure on states and societies; however, it is not yet clear how the EU can engage on climate security and environmental peacemaking. In this light, and in the run-up to the German EU Council Presidency, adelphi and its partners are organising a roundtable series on “Climate, environment, peace: Priorities for EU external action in the decade ahead”.
In January 2020, the German Federal Foreign Office launched Green Central Asia, a regional initiative on climate and security in Central Asia and Afghanistan. The aim of the initiative is to support a dialogue in the region on climate change and associated risks in order to foster regional integration between the six countries involved.
Climate change will shift key coordinates of foreign policy in the coming years and decades. Even now, climate policy is more than just environment policy; it has long since arrived at the centre of foreign policy. The German Foreign Office recently released a report on climate diplomacy recognizing the biggest challenges to security posed by climate change and highlighting fields of action for strengthening international climate diplomacy.