Climate Change Lawsuits Are Here: Are You Ready?

March 6, 2017 @ 5:00 pm – 6:45 pm
Osgoode Professional Development, 26th Floor
1 Dundas St W
Toronto, ON M6P 2A1
Stepan Wood

To attend in person, click here and scroll down to "Climate Change Lawsuits are Here Panel." Only a handful of spots are left as of February 14, 2017. This free event is brought to you by the Osgoode Environmental Justice and Sustainability Clinic and the York Research Chair in Environmental Law and Justice.

To watch the live webcast, click here! This free live webcast is brought to you by Osgoode Professional Development.

Late program addition: Environmental Commissioner of Ontario, Dr. Dianne Saxe, will wrap up the event with concluding remarks after the Q&A session.

Late program change: Keith Stewart, Greenpeace Canada climate change campaigner, will replace Kristin Casper.

Scroll down past the poster image for a plain text version and additional event details.


The age of climate change litigation has arrived. Climate change lawsuits are proceeding in many jurisdictions and have begun to achieve major victories. Hear from leading lawyers about the latest developments in climate litigation in Canada, the USA, Germany, the Philippines and beyond. This free event is a must not only for public interest environmental lawyers but also for lawyers whose clients need to understand the litigation risk they face in relation to climate change.


Monday, March 6, 2017, 5-6:45 pm

Osgoode Professional Development

1 Dundas Street W., 26th Floor, Toronto

Free Admission. RSVP Required,

1.75 substantive CPD hours


4:30 registration 1 Dundas St W, 26th Floor, Toronto
5:00 welcome Prof. Stepan Wood, York Research Chair in Environmental Law & Justice and Co-Director, Osgoode Environmental Justice & Sustainability Clinic
5:05 introduction David Estrin, Counsel, Gowling WLG and Co-Director, Osgoode Environmental Justice & Sustainability Clinic
5:15 presentations Andrea Rodgers, Senior Attorney, Our Children’s Trust and Of Counsel, Western Environmental Law Center, Seattle
    Roda Verheyen, Partner, Rechtsanwälte Günther, Hamburg
    Keith Stewart, Senior Energy Strategist, Greenpeace Canada, Toronto
    Andrew Gage, Staff Counsel, West Coast Environmental Law Association, Victoria
    Prof. Chris Tollefson, Executive Director, Pacific Centre for Environmental Law and Litigation (CELL), Victoria
6:05 q&a  
6:40 closing remarks Dr. Dianne Saxe, Environmental Commissioner of Ontario

1.75 hours substantive CPD credit

Coordinated by Dustin Klaudt, Fellow, Osgoode Environmental Justice and Sustainability Clinic and LL.M. candidate, Osgoode Hall Law School

About the Speakers

Stepan Wood is the York Research Chair in Environmental Law and Justice, founding co-director of the Osgoode Environmental Justice & Sustainability Clinic and co-ordinator of the JD/MES joint program at Osgoode Hall Law School, York University. He teaches and publishes on environmental law, climate change, sustainability, corporate social responsibility, voluntary environmental standards and property law.
David Estrin is Canada’s senior environmental law specialist. He co-chaired the International Bar Association Task Force that produced a ground-breaking report, Achieving Justice and Human Rights in an Era of Climate Disruption. He co-chairs an IBA working group drafting a Model Climate Change Legal Remedies Statute. For more than 40 years he has exclusively practised environmental and resources law, taught widely at law and environmental studies faculties and written leading legal texts. He was first general counsel for the Canadian Environmental Law Association, is Canada’s first private environmental law practitioner and founding editor of the Canadian Environmental Law Reports. In 2016, David received the Law Society of Upper Canada Medal to recognize his outstanding career achievements and community contributions.
Andrea Rodgers represents youth in their lawsuit against the State of Washington demanding that the State enact and enforce greenhouse gas emission reductions in line with current science. The lawsuit argues that the government has a constitutional obligation under the Public Trust doctrine to protect the public interest in natural resources held in trust for the common benefit of the people. Andrea is a Senior Attorney for Our Children’s Trust, a non-profit organization based in Eugene, Oregon that advocates for urgent emissions reductions on behalf of youth and future generations, who have the most to lose if emissions are not reduced. Andrea received her J.D. from Arizona State University where she was co-executive editor of Jurimetrics: The Journal of Law, Science and Technology.
Roda Verheyen is an environmental lawyer with many years’ experience in international environmental law and policy and climate change campaigning in Europe. She represents Peruvian farmer Saul Luciano Lliuya in a German lawsuit demanding that German energy company RWE contribute to the cost of protecting a Peruvian village against the impacts of climate change. Roda is the author of Climate Change Damage and International Law: Prevention Duties and State Responsibility (Martinus Nijhoff, 2005).
Keith Stewart is a senior energy strategist at Greenpeace Canada and teaches energy policy at the University of Toronto. He is currently working as part of Greenpeace's global team on climate change legal efforts in Canada, the Pacific, the Philippines, Norway, Switzerland, and the United States.
Andrew Gage is a long-time environmentalist and environmental lawyer, Andrew leads West Coast Environmental Law’s Climate Change program and its Climate Law in Our Hands initiative,, which recently sent a letter, signed by more than 50 BC-based organizations, to all of the province’s local governments asking them to take action, up to and including litigation, to hold the fossil fuel industry accountable for their fair share of local climate costs. Climate Law in our Hands views a public conversation about the moral and legal responsibility of the fossil fuel industry as a foundation of effective global action on climate change. During law school, Andrew helped found the University of Victoria’s Environmental Law Centre and volunteered with the noted Indian environmental lawyer, M.C. Mehta. These experiences changed his understanding of what is possible through law.
Chris Tollefson is the founding Executive Director of CELL and Professor of Law at the University of Victoria. Chris combines teaching and research on environmental issues with counsel work for various public interest environmental clients. He was counsel to BC Nature and Nature Canada during both the Enbridge Northern Gateway and Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline hearing processes. Currently he is counsel on a judicial review of an environmental assessment approval recently granted to a liquefied natural gas processing facility that, if built, will become one of the Canada’s largest point source GHG emitters. Chris was the founding Executive Director of the UVic Environmental Law Centre, and a former President of Ecojustice Canada.
Dianne Saxe is the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario. Prior to her appointment in December 2015, Dianne was one of Canada’s most respected environmental lawyers. She has 40 years’ unparalleled experience writing, interpreting, and litigating Ontario’s energy and environmental laws.