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Towards a Regime of Emission Litigation based on Science

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 January 2017

Kai Purnhagen*
Wageningen University


Courts in Europe increasingly acknowledge an individual right to emission reduction against states. Such a right forms a new policy tool that can be used to enforce emission reduction. It can also be used to enforce scientifically sound environmental policy, as Courts recognise science as a default position when determining the content of the right. The individual right to emission reduction is another tool in the making to consider when implementing scientific insights into policy making.

Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2015

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4 Case C-237/07, Dieter Janecek v Freistaat Bayern, ECLI:EU:C:2008:447.

5 Council Directive 96/62/EC of 27 September 1996 on ambient air quality assessment and management (OJ 1996 L 296, p. 55), as amended by Regulation (EC) No 1882/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 29 September 2003 (OJ 2003 L 284, p. 1; ‘Directive 96/62’).

6 Case C-237/07, Dieter Janecek v Freistaat Bayern, ECLI:EU:C:2008:447, para 39.

7 C/09/456689/HA ZA 13-1396, see K Purnhagen, Climate law: dutch decision raises bar, 523 Nature 410 (2015).