The First German Climate Case

Petra Minnerop

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


On 29 October 2018, three German families, together with Greenpeace Germany, filed suit against the German Federal Government in the Administrative Court in Berlin. They claimed that the State’s lack of climate protection constituted an infringement of their fundamental rights under Article 2 (right to life), Article 12 (right to occupation) and Article 14 (right to property) of the German Basic Law (Grundgesetz). The Berlin Administrative Court found in favour of the German Federal Government but granted leave to appeal on all grounds.1 Since the German Parliament (Bundestag) adopted a new law, the first Climate Protection Act in 2019,2 no appeal was filed and the decision of the first instance became final. This case commentary gives an overview of the main legal issues that were in dispute, and the - albeit subtle - legal developments that can be taken away from this first German climate case.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEnvironmental Law Review
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 17 Jul 2020

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    Minnerop, P. (Accepted/In press). The First German Climate Case. Environmental Law Review.