Climate change litigation has grown exponentially in the last decade, paralleled by the emergence of a rich legal and social sciences literature assessing these cases. Building on a recent review in WIRES Climate Change, this article evaluates the growth of this literature and the key themes it highlights. In 2019, climate litigation literature experienced substantial growth, with a focus on multiple novel dimensions: new high-profile judgments; emerging legal avenues, types of actors, litigation objectives, and jurisdictions, especially those in the Global South; and additional interdisciplinary analyses. Just as in the underlying case law, climate litigation scholarship shows evidence of distinct but overlapping waves that build together in a manner similar to a harmonic chord. Even so, this literature has not yet engaged deeply with questions about the effectiveness of climate litigation as a governance tool, particularly in the context of the decentralized system formalized with the 2015 Paris Agreement.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||18|
|Journal||Annual Review of Law and Social Science|
|State||Published - Oct 13 2020|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Sociology and Political Science