According to a press release and copy of the complaint obtained from the organization Dejusticia, 25 youth plaintiffs between the ages of 7 and 26 years old have sued several bodies within the Colombian government, Colombian municipalities, and a number of corporations to enforce their claimed rights to a healthy environment, life, health, food, and water. The plaintiffs allege that climate change along with the government's failure to reduce deforestation and ensure compliance with a target for zero-net deforestation in the Colombian Amazon by the year 2020, (as agreed under the Paris Agreement and the National Development Plan 2014-2018), threatens plaintiffs’ fundamental rights. The youth plaintiffs have filed a special constitutional claim called a “tutela” used to enforce fundamental rights.
A lower court ruled against the youth plaintiffs. Youth plaintiffs filed an appeal on February 16, 2018.
On April 5, 2018, the Supreme Court reversed the lower court, recognizing that the "fundamental rights of life, health, the minimum subsistence, freedom, and human dignity are substantially linked and determined by the environment and the ecosystem." The Supreme Court ordered the government to formulate and implement an action plan to address deforestation in the Amazon.
Full summary to follow upon review of a translation of the court documents.
|01/29/2018||Complaint||Download||Original Complaint (in Spanish)|
|02/12/2018||Decision||Download||Lower Court Ruling (in Spanish)|
|02/12/2018||Opinion||Download||Dissent in Lower Court Ruling (in Spanish)|
|02/16/2018||Appeal||Download||Appeal (in Spanish)|
|03/16/2018||Not Available||Download||Amicus Brief from Dr. James E. Hansen|
|04/05/2018||Decision||Download||Supreme Court Decision in Spanish|
|04/05/2018||Decision||Download||Unofficial Translation of Excerpts from the Supreme Court Decision|