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Environmental activism| Environmental activism
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Environmental activism| Environmental activism

An environmental group that challenged climate policies of the UK government has lost a high court battle.

Plan B Earth claimed that ministers hadn’t taken practical and effective steps in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It asked Mr Justice Bourne for permission to review the case, but he refused.

Plan B argued that the climate crisis legislation and human rights legislation were breached and claimed that ministers failed to take practical, effective measures to adapt to the current and future impacts of the climate emergency.

Activists requested a declaration by ministers stating that failure to implement practical and effective measures to meet climate commitments under the Paris agreement, 2008 Climate Change Act and the Paris Agreement was a violation of the 1998 Human Rights Act.

Tim Crosland, Plan B’s director, stated that we are all witnessing the devastating effects of the current level at 1.2C heating [above pre-industrial levels]: Deadly famines occurring in Madagascar, Afghanistan, and East Africa; wildfires and floods ravaging communities and ecosystems across the globe, including in the UK.

The City of London continues to profit from financing a trajectory towards 3-4C heating, which is terrorism in the younger generation and terrorism in the global south.

However, the high court ruled that we cannot use 1.5C Paris as the benchmark for UK governments’ legal obligation to safeguard human life. This is despite scientific and political consensus that this limit is vital to protect human life. The public will see through the legal scheming of the UK government over 1.5C through Cop26.

If the courts ignore the scientific evidence that is required to protect life, then the right of life is nothing more than an illusion in a political system that favors short-term corporate profits over the welfare of ordinary citizens.

Crosland said: You can appeal to the court on appeal and, from there to the European court for human rights.

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