The Republic of Vanuatu 

is leading the initiative at the UN International Court of Justice
for an Advisory Opinion on the Obligations of States
relevant to climate action

The Republic of Vanuatu led a global coalition
to adopt a UN General Assembly Resolution asking the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to clarify State obligations and legal consequences related to climate change.  
The Court proceedings are now underway, and States are preparing legal submissions

The planet is facing an existential climate crisis. 

International Law already contains obligations to prevent harm to the environment and protect human rights.  How can these obligations be applied to spur the transformative climate action by States that is required? 

The UN’s International Court of Justice is the only principal organ of the UN System that has not yet been given an opportunity to help address the climate crisis.  

Vanuatu successfully led a coalition of 132 nations in Adopting by Consensus a UNGA Resolution calling for a non-binding Advisory Opinion from the International Court of Justice to gain clarity how existing International Laws can be applied to strengthen action on climate change, protect people and the environment and save the Paris Agreement. 

Vanuatu is leading a core group of nations which drafted a question to ask the Court. Congratulations to the leaders of Vanuatu, Antigua & Barbuda, Costa Rica, Sierra Leone, Angola, Germany, Mozambique, Liechtenstein, Samoa, Federated States of Micronesia, Bangladesh, Morocco, Singapore, Uganda, New Zealand, Vietnam, Romania and Portugal.

The ICJ climate Resolution was adopted by consensus on 29 March 2023 during the 77th session of the UN General Assembly requesting the International Court of Justice to provide an advisory opinion on the obligations of States under international law to protect the rights of present and future generations against the adverse effects of climate change.

U-Report Poll on the Impacts of Climate Change for young people. To register, text JOIN to 150 or click on the link to register online: