Vanuatu aims to take climate crisis to the International Court of Justice

Vanuatu aims to take climate crisis to the International Court of Justice
Credit: Wikimedia

South Pacific Ocean nation Vanuatu on Friday launched a campaign to seek an advisory opinion on the effects of climate change from the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

While ICJ advisory opinions are non-binding, the island nation hopes this would contribute to the emergence of international legislation for future generations on the material and human consequences of global warming, its government said.

On its own, an individual state is not able to seek a legal opinion from the court, which is based in The Hague. Vanuatu will therefore try to mobilise other countries to vote in favour of its initiative at the next UN General Assembly, in September 2022, the spokesman of the Vanuatu Government, Yvon Basil, told French news agency AFP.

The country, which has about 300,000 inhabitants, has been slammed by two Category 5 cyclones in the past five years, and is under severe threat from rising sea waters resulting from global warming. It said it would coordinate its efforts with other Pacific states and other countries with similar climate concerns.

The episodes of devastation caused by climate events are no longer exceptional, its government said in a press statement. On the contrary, they are becoming the norm for all island states.

The Brussels Times


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