On 13 April 2023, Türkiye submitted its updated Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to the Secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The NDC states that Türkiye aims to reduce its CO2 emissions by 41% by 2030 compared to the business-as-usual scenario with 2012 as its base year, and plans on peaking emissions by 2038 at the latest. This would increase CO2 emissions by 30% until 2030. Due to this further increase in CO2 emissions, climate activists Atlas Sarrafoğlu, Ela Naz Birdal and Seren Anaçoğlu filed a lawsuit against President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the Ministry of Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change before the Council of State (the highest administrative court in Türkiye) on 8 May 2023.
The plaintiffs claim that Türkiye’s NDC is inadequate under the Paris Agreement and that the resulting increase in CO2 emissions violates their human rights under the country’s constitution, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the European Convention on Human Rights. The rights they claim to have been violated include: the right to life, the right to intergenerational equality, the right to the protection of one’s private life, the right to health, cultural rights, the right to develop one’s material and spiritual existence, the right to live in a healthy and balanced environment, the right to education, the right to work, and the right to healthy food and water. Because of the alleged inadequacy of the NDC under the Paris Agreement, they demand its annulment and the creation of a more ambitious commitment.
Status of Case:
News Article by the Turkish human rights press agency “Bianet”: https://bianet.org/haber/young-climate-activists-file-lawsuit-against-erdogan-over-inadequate-emission-goals-278474
Date Last updated:
November 10th, 2023