News | 28 July 2020

Who should pay to fix the climate emergency?

Journalist Simon Roach of Channel 4 News examines the question along the lines of the „Huaraz Case“

In a recent video feature, British television station Channel 4 News poses the question "Who should pay to fix the climate emergency?". Journalist Simon Roach vividly explains why this is a question of fairness and justice, bringing together the various dimensions that form part of the answer: Starting at the industrial revolution, he looks at individual countries’ contributions to climate change, explains the sometimes confusing world of climate diplomacy, describes climate impacts and the resulting need for climate finance.

In doing so, Simon Roach is guided by Saúl Luciano Lliuya's understanding of climate justice, reflected in his his civil lawsuit against RWE: that large emitters are responsible for supporting people in poorer countries who suffer from the adverse impacts of climate change without having contributed to the problem. Filed almost five years ago and still ongoing, Saúl Luciano’s claim against RWE is the first and only climate change lawsuit in which a court found that a private company could potentially be held liable for climate damages from its emissions, allowing the case to progress to the evidentiary stage. As such, the case already is an important precedent for climate justice.

Simon Roach's conclusion: “When these questions of justice and fairness aren’t answered, and when international agreements don’t lead to action, individuals at the sharp edge of change will”. Courageous pioneers like Saúl Luciano are already leading the way.