Climate Change laws and Policies
According to the most comprehensive database of relevant policy and legislation, the number of global climate change laws has increased 20-fold since 1997. Environmental legislation has grown rapidly since the Rio Earth Summit in 1992. There are now environmental framework laws in over 170 countries. Around 150 countries have incorporated the right to a healthy environment into their domestic legal frameworks, whether through constitutions, laws, jurisprudence, or participation in regional human rights treaties. The recently adopted Human Rights Council resolution recognizing a human right to a clean, healthy, and sustainable environment raises the bar even higher at the international level.
However, it is insufficient. Laws and rights at the highest levels have not been translated into specific and widespread environmental laws that are effectively implemented at all levels. This must change.