Despite the significant body of scientific research indicating that we are reaching a tipping point in the global fight against the damaging effects of climate change, global carbon output continues to climb. However, there is growing international consensus around the need for urgent action to reverse the effects of climate change. The UK now has a legally-binding commitment to transition to Net Zero emissions by 2050 and there is a growing body of legal and regulatory requirements designed to force the pace of change.
Against this background, governments, institutions and individuals are increasingly turning to the courts to enforce action against climate change. According to the 2020 report "Global trends in climate change litigation" published by the London School of Economics, to date there have been 1,587 cases of climate litigation brought globally as of July 2020. Whilst most were brought in the US, cases are increasing in the UK and elsewhere in Europe (62 in the UK and 57 in Europe as of July 2020) and the range of claimants adopting novel approaches in order to establish legal liability in relation to climate change issues is widening.