Portuguese children behind landmark climate change lawsuit raise over £20,000

The heroic challenge laid down in the name of seven Portuguese schoolchildren from central Portugal’s fire-ravaged districts has already raised over £20,000.

The bid, announced last month, is designed to force the world’s major polluters to reduce emissions and properly tackle-climate change (click here).

It was mounted by seven children, backed by NGO Global Legal Action Network (Glan) and a team of British climate-change lawyers and barristers.

How the movement came to choose seven children in Portugal is unclear, but the latest fire tragedies have simply added to the urgency of the cause.

The children themselves have since appeared in a Youtube clip, explaining their motivations (click here).

Simão, Leonor, Cláudia, Martim, Mariana, André and Sofia show a new generation that will not sit back and wait for badly-chosen decisions.

As the clip explains: “Their case is about the future of all young people”.

In a few horrific weeks dogged by wildfires that have killed more people in Portugal since records began, the children’s crowdfunding campaign has reached £21,113.

Organisers aiming to get their case to the European Court of Human Rights have now extended the “stretch target” to £100,000.

The CrowdJustice fundraising page explains that fire tragedies like Portugal’s “are becoming the new norm because governments in Europe and beyond are failing to make the necessary cuts to their greenhouse gas emissions.”

Among countries targeted are the UK, Ireland, Germany and France – said to be jointly responsible for about 15 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions and known to “hold a significant proportion of the world’s known fossil fuel reserves”.

The inference here is that these fossil fuels should “stay in the ground” and not be exploited for commercial gain to the detriment of the climate.

Said GLAN over the initial fund-raising ‘coup’: “A victory in our case would therefore be nothing less than ground-breaking, particularly because the decision of the court would be binding across Europe.”

To find out more about how to help this campaign get itself into the courtroom see: https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/climate-change-echr/.

GLAN has also recently stated its case to the BBC (https://soundcloud.com/user-163824213/bbc-world-service-features-glans-climate-change-action)

If successful, this court action could knock Portugal’s concessions for on- and offshore oil and gas drilling definitively on the head.

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