World court should rule on climate science to quash skeptics, says Law Prof. Philippe Sands
Laments scientifically-settled questions such as whether climate change is even happening are still being challenged by “scientifically qualified, knowledgeable and influential persons”, he said.
False claims from climate sceptics that humans are not responsible for global warming and that sea level is not rising should be scotched by an international court ruling, a leading lawyer has said.
Scientific bodies such as the UN’s climate science panel have concluded that climate change is underway and caused by humans, Prof Philippe Sands QC told an audience at the UK’s Supreme Court. But a ruling by a body such as the International Court of Justice (ICJ) would carry much more weight with public opinion and help pave the way for future legal cases on climate change, he said.
Prof. Roger Pielke Jr reacts: 'Int'l Court of Justice should rule on climate science to quash sceptics, prepare for trials says Prof. Philippe Sands'
Pielke Jr. : 'WTF: Need to outlaw unwelcome scientific views of "scientifically qualified, knowledgeable and influential persons"'
Pielke Jr: 'This week began with a NYT op-ed comparing climate skeptics to Hitler. It ends with multiple calls for skeptics to be jailed. Lost the plot?'
Sands, a professor of international law at University College London and author of influential books on the Iraq war and interrogation techniques at Guantánamo Bay, said that failure to act on climate change would lead to an even bigger European refugee crisis than today’s.
“A finding of fact on one or more of these matters [such as whether climate change is man-made], or indeed on other pertinent matters, would be significant and authoritative and could well be dispositive on a range of future actions, including negotiations.” Scientifically-settled questions such as whether climate change is even happening are still being challenged by “scientifically qualified, knowledgeable and influential persons”, he said.