The European Climate Law: Strengthening EU Procedural Climate Governance?



Kulovesi K, Sebastian O, Harro vH & Savaresi A (2024) The European Climate Law: Strengthening EU Procedural Climate Governance?. Journal of Environmental Law.

In 2021, the European Union (EU) adopted the so-called European Climate Law (ECL), enshrining in law the 2050 climate-neutrality objective and upgraded 2030 emission reduction target. The ECL bears the hallmarks of what we term ‘procedural climate governance’, which comprises the regulatory frameworks, instruments, institutions and processes that shape substantive climate policies and their implementation. This article identifies seven key functions of procedural climate governance—target-setting; planning; monitoring and evaluation; climate policy integration; scientific expert advice; access to justice; and public participation—and uses these for critically assessing the ECL. We argue that while the ECL has significantly strengthened important aspects of EU procedural climate governance, further reforms are needed for the EU to develop and implement the substantive policies towards a climate-neutral and climate-resilient economy and society and to bolster public support and ownership of the transition. The upcoming reviews of the ECL and the Governance Regulation provide a critical opportunity for strengthening procedural climate governance in the EU.

Output Status: Forthcoming/Available Online

Journal of Environmental Law

StatusIn Press
FundersEuropean Commission (Horizon 2020)
Publication date online31/01/2024
Date accepted by journal21/12/2023

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