Landmark Victory in Czech Climate Suit!

Chvaletice coal-fired power plant, Czech Republic. PHOTO: Laura Otýpková, Frank Bold

ELAW partners at Frank Bold Advocates share good news: Prague’s Municipal Court issued a landmark decision ordering the state to urgently take measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, in accordance with its obligations under European and international law.

Laura Otýpková, a lawyer at Frank Bold, worked on the case. Laura writes:

“Thank you, ELAW, for your kind cooperation and all the help that you provided for the lawsuit, including Dr. Mark Chernaik’s scientific advice, Jen Gleason’s case law and legal consultations, and Maggie Keenan’s help organizing an ELAW Fellowship that helped me come to Eugene to collaborate with your team. One of the priorities during my Fellowship was to begin building the scientific information and legal strategies to launch this case. And only three years later, we are celebrating a historic win in the Czech Republic!”

This is the first time that courts in the Czech Republic have ordered the government to drastically reduce emissions in accordance with European and international law!

State authorities are obliged to have a plan of precise and complete measures towards the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 55% by 2030 compared to 1990. The plaintiffs —an association of over 260 citizens called The Czech Climate Litigation— convinced the court that the measures taken by the state so far are not sufficient.

The court found that the state had not provided legitimate reasons for its inaction and cannot absolve itself of its climate responsibility by reference to its relatively small contribution to global climate change.

The Czech Climate Litigation, represented by Frank Bold, sued the state last spring after more than a year of preparation.

We cannot afford to backslide on climate commitments. Congratulations to Frank Bold and The Czech Climate Litigation association for holding the Czech government accountable.

For more information, please visit:

Bern Johnson
Executive Director
Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide