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Climate Litigation in Argentina: A Critical and Prospective Analysis

In: Chinese Journal of Environmental Law
Authors:
Gastón Medici-Colombo Faculty of Law, Universitat de Barcelona Barcelona Spain

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https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4259-2828
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María Valeria Berros Research Center of the Faculty of Legal and Social Sciences, Universidad Nacional del Litoral Santa Fe Argentina

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https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9472-5955
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Abstract

This article analyses the climate litigation scenario in Argentina. Based on the Sabin Center Database, we conducted an in-depth study of all the proceeding documents of the identified cases. We found that, in Argentina, a significant number of climate cases exists compared to other jurisdictions in the region and in the Global South as a whole. These cases show civil society actors suing public and corporate actors due to the deployment of ‘climate-disruptive’ projects or the failed protection of climate-relevant ecosystems. Plaintiffs use a variety of judicial avenues and grounds from different regulatory levels. That said, the case law study leads us to conclude that climate litigation is still incipient in Argentina. Climate change is a very novel legal issue for Argentinean litigants and courts, with lawsuits only developing actual climate argumentation very recently and with not even one judgment, let alone a landmark decision, addressing climate concerns. That is a notable difference from other jurisdictions in the region. Furthermore, we anticipate that climate litigation will continue to grow in Argentina, given weak political opportunities for climate action and stronger legal opportunities provided by broad judicial avenues, a multiplicity of grounds that can be used in climate arguments, and innovative environmental legal approaches developed by the Supreme Court.

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