Thomson v. Minister for Climate Change Issues [2017] NZHC 733 (New Zealand)

Sarah Thomson initiated a judicial review concerning the Government of New Zealand’s response to climate change, which she considered insufficient in the light (among others) of New Zealand’s obligations under international law. Her claims relating to New Zealand’s NDC were dismissed.

In an obiter at para. 38, Mallon J. notes a country’s NDC is not binding under international law. This is doubtful. States have an obligation under article 4, paragraph 2, of the Paris Agreement, to take measures in view of realizing the objectives of their NDCs. NDCs may also constitute unilateral declarations capable of creating legal obligations.

See NMs. Thomson’s complaint and Mallon J.’ judgment. For a brief analysis, look here.

China beats 2017 coal-fired power capacity reduction target

“China eliminated or suspended 65 gigawatts (GW) of coal-fired power capacity in 2017, exceeding the national target of 50 GW, the state-owned Xinhua news agency reported on Thursday, citing the State Council.”