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De Conto v. Italy and 32 other States

Jurisdiction: European Court of Human Rights


Side A: De Conto (Individual)


Side B: Italy and 32 other States (Government)


Core objectives: Youth filed human rights complaint against 33 governments.


Summary
On March 3, 2021, Italian youth filed a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights against 33 countries. The applicant, a 20-year-old woman living in a small town in northern Italy, near the Dolomites mountains, claims she has suffered from psychological disorders from an early age. She submits that global warming showed its effects in her living area in October 2018 through "Storm Vaia," an unusually severe wind and rainstorm that felled around 20 million trees. The applicant also refers to forest fires and heat waves as climate impacts which affect her. She maintains that the distress linked to global warming has worsened her psychological state. Relying on Articles 2, 8, 13 and 14, she complains that the 33 States party to the Convention which are also parties to the 2015 Paris Agreement (including Turkey, Switzerland, Portugal, Austria, Norway and France), have not taken sufficient measures to implement the latter. She complains about a violation (i) of the positive obligations of States under Articles 2 and 8 to protect the environment; (ii) of Article 14, since the harmful effects of global warming would hit the younger generations harder; (iii) of article 13, alleging that the domestic remedies would not be effective since she would be forced to lodge a complaint in the courts of 33 States, a burden which it would be impossible for her to bear because of her young age and limited financial resources.

The complaint alleges that the respondents have violated human rights by failing to take sufficient action on climate change, and seeks an order requiring them to take more ambitious action. The case is similar to Duarte Agostinho and Others v. Portugal and 32 Other States.

Full case documents will be added as they become available. 
from the Grantham Research Institute
from the Grantham Research Institute
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