UCL Faculty of Laws


Law and Policy of Climate Change (LAWS0293)

This course focuses on law and policy on climate change at different levels of governance (international climate law, EU climate law, domestic climate law). The climate crisis presents us with major social, environmental and legal challenges, as well as complex climate governance systems. It is both conceptually and legally fascinating. Further, climate change is a whole-society, whole-legal system problem, and this course is important for everyone, not just environmental lawyers.

This course will examine the development of international climate change law and policy, the key EU governance approaches to climate change, including the emissions trading system, and domestic climate governance. It will also address some of the difficult legal and policy issues at stake in different legal areas and different sectors, such as the role of democratic and technocratic inputs to climate governance.

Module syllabus

The precise issues taught will vary, but a number of the following issues are likely to be included:

  • Participation and democracy in the climate crisis

  • English climate law

  • The International Legal Framework

  • The Paris Agreement

  • Climate justice

  • Market mechanisms

  • The EU and climate change

  • Climate litigation

  • Sectoral impacts on climate (eg internet, aviation, shipping)

Recommended materials

Module reading lists and other module materials will be provided via online module pages, once students have made their module selections upon enrolment. No single book takes the approach envisaged for this module.

The convenor is happy to discuss reading if contacted by a student during the module.

Key information

Module details
Credit value:22.5 credits (225 learning hours)
Convenor:Maria Lee
Other Teachers:Other colleagues specializing in climate change will contribute to this course.
Teaching Delivery:

10 x 2-hour weekly seminars, term 1

Who may enrol:LLM Students Only


Must not be taken with:None
Qualifying module for:LLM in Environmental Law and Policy
Practice Assessment:TBD
Final Assessment:48 hour take home papers (100%)