Global moves to tackle climate change through lawsuits are poised to break new ground this week, as groups and individuals seek to hold governments and companies accountable for the damage they are causing.
On Tuesday, action by 12 UK citizens reaches the high court for the first time, while on Wednesday in San Francisco, the science of climate change will effectively be on trial at a key moment in a lawsuit.
The litigation represents a new front of climate action, with citizens aiming to force stronger moves to cut carbon emissions, and win damages to pay the costs of dealing with the impacts of warming.
They are inspired by momentous cases from the past, from the defeat of big tobacco to the racial desegregation of schools in the US. Big oil is fighting back hard, but though victories have been rare to date wins are more likely in future, as legal experts say the attitudes of judges often shift with the times.
A flurry of billion-dollar cases against fossil fuel companies brought by New York city and communities in California over the rising seas has pushed climate litigation into the limelight. But cases are being brought across the globe, with more than 1,000 suits now logged by the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia law school in New York.