June 29, 2016
Pakistan Supreme Court Allows Youth’s Constitutional Climate Case to Proceed on Behalf of Present and Future Generations
At a hearing in Karachi, the Pakistan Supreme Court heard arguments from public interest environmental attorney Qazi Ali Athar and ruled in favor of seven-year-old youth petitioner Rabab Ali. The Court overruled the registrar's previous rejection of the petition and ruled that Rabab's constitutional climate change lawsuit is allowed to proceed to the merits of her case.
April 5, 2016
Youth Files Constitutional Climate Petition with the Supreme Court of Pakistan
Karachi, Pakistan – Today, a 7-year-old girl, Rabab Ali, through her father and pro bono environmental attorney Qazi Ali Athar, and on behalf of all the Pakistani people, filed a climate change lawsuit against the Federation of Pakistan and the Province of Sindh in the Supreme Court of Pakistan. The Constitution Petition asserts that, through the exploitation and continued promotion of fossil fuels, in particular dirty coal, the Pakistan and Sindh governments have violated the Public Trust Doctrine and the youngest generation’s fundamental constitutional rights to life, liberty, property, human dignity, information, and equal protection of the law.
“The protection of these inalienable and fundamental rights is essential if we are to have any chance of leaving our children and future generations with a stable climate system and environment capable of sustaining human life,” said Qazi Ali Athar, public interest environmental attorney representing his daughter as youth petitioner in the case. “Pakistan is rich in renewable energy resources such as solar and wind, more than enough to meet the energy needs of current and future generations of Pakistanis. Yet the federal and provincial governments of Pakistan, along with the vested interests in the country and the region, are exploiting Pakistan’s most environmentally degrading and carbon intensive fuels—low-grade coal from the Thar Coal Reserves—in violation of the Pakistani people’s constitutionally protected fundamental rights.”
List of Petition Annexures:
- Annexure A: Pakistan's Framework for Implementation of Climate Change Policy
- Annexure B: James Hansen, et al., Assessing ‘‘Dangerous Climate Change’’: Required Reduction of Carbon Emissions to Protect Young People, Future Generations and Nature (2013)
- Annexure C: Pakistan's Intended Nationally Determined Contributions
- Annexure D: Thar Coal Analysis
- Annexure E: Affidavit - Thar Coal Expert Opinion
- Annexure F: China-Pakistan Economic Corridor - Agreements/MoUs Signed During Visit of Chinese President