Wardyński & Partners co-author Cambridge book on liability for climate change


A book devoted to legal liability for climate change has been published by Cambridge University Press. Lawyers from Wardyński & Partners authored the section involving Polish law.

Climate Change Liability: Transnational Law and Practice is the first serious attempt to determine who may be held liable for climate change under current law.

The book is divided into two parts. The first part addresses the legal, scientific and political aspects of liability for climate change. The second part is a comparative study of the complex liability issues in 17 jurisdictions around the world (including more-developed and less-developed countries) plus the European Union as a whole.

The authors covered countries that are the largest emitters of greenhouse gases (such as the US and China), those with economies of global importance (such as Germany and Japan), high-emissions countries (such as Poland and Russia), and countries most directly threatened by the negative consequences of climate change (such as Indonesia).

The authors of the section on Poland, including Tomasz Wardyński and other lawyers at the firm (Izabela Zielińska-Barłożek, Maciej Szewczyk, Dominik Wałkowski, Bartosz Kuraś, Agnieszka Szydlik and Joanna Szafrańska), sought to determine the degree to which current regulations (under public and private law) will be able to meet the challenges surrounding liability for climate change. They also identified possible directions in which the regulations may evolve.

“Regulations concerning the broad area of counteracting climate change are relatively new,” said Izabela Zielińska-Barłożek, a partner at Wardyński & Partner who heads the firm’s Environmental Law practice. “There is a paradox at work here, because on the issue of climate change, unlike most other cases, application of the law in practice often cannot keep up with the pace at which new regulations are introduced. Nonetheless, we should expect to see a growing number of cases under environmental laws, including cases brought by plaintiffs suffering the consequences of progressive changes in the earth’s climate.”