Senior Swiss Citizens File Action at European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. © Greenpeace / Emanuel Büchler

Support the KlimaSeniorinnen in their fight for Climate Justice!

More than 2.000 Swiss Senior Women are at one of Europe’s highest court to demand climate justice. Add your name to support them:

“Protect our human rights in the face of the climate crisis!”

The climate crisis is not remote. It already threatens lives and health globally for people in vulnerable situations. States still fail to take ambitious actions to safeguard human rights. More and more people are therefore turning to the courts for protection. 

Senior Women suffer especially from increasing and more intense heat waves. They don’t have time to waste. In Switzerland, they formed an association to take their state to court for doing too little to prevent climate change. After exhausting all national options, they applied to the European Court of Human Rights, whose 17-Judge Grand Chamber heard their case on 29 March 2023. The Senior Women say Switzerland must do its share to keep global heating below 1.5ºC. They call the ECtHR for protection of their human rights in the context of climate change. The decision by the ECtHR will ultimately be a legal precedent establishing States’ human rights obligations in the context of climate change. This judgment will create a worldwide impact.

Senior Women Vote for Climate Protection © Greenpeace / Piero Good

What happened so far

The KlimaSeniorinnen took the Swiss government to court to protect their basic right to life itself. The Swiss courts refused to listen. So the Senior women took their government to the European Court of Human Rights. They are part of a global wave of cases seeking climate justice through the courts, demanding that governments and polluting corporations are held accountable for their failures to act. The Court’s ruling will have a worldwide impact.

Why is this important?

The KlimaSeniorinnen case is the first climate change case the European Court of Human Rights has ever examined! The Court will determine if states have duties to mitigate the climate crisis in order to safeguard human rights. Together with two other cases, the court will define its role regarding the biggest threat to human rights. The Court’s human rights rulings are legally binding, with a massive impact on the potential to protect present and future generations from further climate destruction. These women are literally changing the world!

Climate Seniors at Swiss Glacier to protest climate in action Klimaseniorinnen

The ClimateSeniors are making history

For the first time, a climate case was being heard at the European Court of Human Rights. The ClimateSeniors formed in 2016 with the support of Greenpeace. As older women, they are particularly affected by the increasing heat waves and are thus entitled to claim their right to life and health. The ECtHR will decide whether there is a human rights obligation to protect the climate seniors. And ideally, it will also determine how much Switzerland must do to uphold human rights.