What is climate justice?

Climate justice recognises that climate change will not affect everyone in the same way, and that this will lead to inequalities between places, people and even generations. It moves climate change conversations beyond the science and the physical impacts, to questions of politics and ethics, such as who should bear responsibility for paying for the damage caused by climate change, or how much developed countries should help the developing world increase their energy use in a sustainable way.

The impacts of climate change are likely to be felt most by those communities that contributed least to the problem, such as developing countries, indigenous peoples and future generations. For example, a study published in 2021 found that children born today across the globe will on average face seven times more scorching heatwaves, 2.6 times more droughts, 2.8 times as many river floods, almost three times as many crop failures, and twice the number of wildfires during their lives than their grandparents.

In recent years, various actions to increase awareness or tackle these issues have arisen. For example, in 2019 The Hague Court of Appeal ordered the Dutch government to reduce the country's greenhouse gas emissions by at least 25% by the end of 2020 compared to 1990. This placed the Netherlands under a legal obligation to take measures to protect its citizens from the consequences of climate change.

Movements like Fridays for Future and Extinction Rebellion have also gained in popularity as people use their voices to call for climate justice.

Next question: 

Is climate change the same as global warming?

Climate change

Delve deeper into one of the biggest challenges facing humanity.