Jannis Krüßmann et al. v. Nordrhein-Westfalen (NRW)
Jurisdiction: Federal Constitutional Court
Principle law(s): Federal Climate Protection Act and to change further regulations ("Bundesklimaschutzgesetz” or “KSG")
Side A: Jannis Krüßmann (Individual)
Side A: Lea Wynhoff (Individual)
Side A: Tobias Linck (Individual)
Side A: Mia Hense (Individual)
Side B: Nordrhein-Westfalen (NRW) (Government)
Core objectives: The inadequacy of a climate protection law in the State of Nordrhein-Westfalen.
SummaryOn July 15, 2021, Jannis Krüßmann, Lea Wynhoff, Tobias Linck, and Mia Hense brought a constitutional claim against the state of Nordrhein-Westfalen (NRW) for the inadequacy of the adopted climate law. The plaintiffs rely on the Paris Agreement and the Basic Law to call on the state legislature to set a pathway to reducing greenhouse gas emissions to comply with the remaining CO2 budget and adopt sufficient instruments to achieve and verify the climate protection targets required.
On January 18, 2022, the First Senate of the Federal Constitutional Court did not admit the eleven complaints for adjudication, on the basis of a lack of adequate prospects. Widely in alignment with its decision in Neubauer v. Germany, the Court acknowledged that greenhouse gas reduction burdens cannot be unilaterally offloaded onto the future. However, in the cases at hand, complainants’ fundamental rights were not violated preemptively, because the state legislatures are not subject to a CO2 emissions budget, which, according to the Court in Neubauer v. Germany, is a prerequisite for such an effect. Rather it is the federal German legislature that is bound by the CO2 budget, but has a prerogative with respect to its implementation. As regards the federal states, the Court clarified that they too are responsible for climate protection, in particular by virtue of Article 20a of the Basic Law.
Related laws and policies
Federal Climate Protection Act and to change further regulations ("Bundesklimaschutzgesetz” or “KSG")
The purpose of this law is to ensure that national climate protection targets are met and European targets are met. It is also intended to support Germany's commitment at the UN climate summit in New York on September 23, 2019 to pursue greenhouse gas neutrality as a long-term goal by 2050. It wa...