Status under International Climate Change Law

  • UNFCCC: signature (12 June 1992), ratification (10 Dec 1993), and entry into force (21 March 1994).
  • KP: signature (16 Mar 1998), ratification (9 July 2003), entry into force (16 Feb 2005).
  • Quantified emission limitation or reduction commitment: -8%
  • Vienna Convention: signature (22 March 1985), ratification (17 Dec 1987), and entry into force (22 Sept 1988)
  • Montreal Protocol: signature (16 Sept 1987), ratification (28 Dec 1988), and entry into force (1 Jan 1989)
  • LRTAP: signature (13 Nov 1979) and ratification (6 May 1983)
  • Energy Charter: signature (17 Dec 1994), ratification (19 Sept 1996), entry into force (16 April 1998).
  • Energy Efficiency Protocol: signature and ratification (19 Sept 1996)
  • Espoo Convention: accepted (16 Sept 1996)
  • 2020 Commitment: 20% to 30% emissions reduction by 2020 compared to 1990 levels, provided that other developed countries commit themselves to comparable emission reductions and adequately contribute according to their abilities.
  • 2030 Commitment: 50% emissions reduction by 2030 compared to 1990 levels.

Federal Laws on Climate Change


Air protection

  • CO2 Levy on Process and Heating Fuels 2010 (English) taxes CO2 emissions from stationary fuels such as heating and process fuels.
  • Ordinance on Air Pollution Control protects against the harmful effects of air pollution by regulating emissions. [enfrge; it]

Ordinances relative to tax incentives:


Forests and Land Use

Environmental Impact Assessment


Local, State, and Regional Legislation and Initiatives

Government Documents

Factual Matters

Key Litigation

NGO Resources 

Secondary sources

A. Ayer, B. Revaz, Droit suisse de l’environnement: Code annoté, Schultess (2011).

A. Epiney, “Integration” of Switzerland in the EU emission trading scheme, in Avosetta Group, Emissions Trading in International, European, and National Climate Protection Law, 2005.

A. Griffel, Raumplanungs, Bau- und Umweltrecht, Stampfli (2010).

Confédération suisse, Adaptation aux changements climatiques en Suisse – Premier volet de la stratégie du Conseil Fédéral du 2 mars 2012, OFEV (2012).

P. Moor, A.-Ch. Favre, A. Fluckiger, La loi sur la protection de l’environnement, Stampfli (2010).

Publications. FEDERAL OFFICE FOR THE ENVIRONMENT. 13 Aug 2014. available at http://www.bafu.admin.ch/

Office federal de l’envrionnement, des forets et du paysage, Panorama du droit de l’environnement, Cahier de l’environnemnt n. 226, 2005.

Summaries of legislation compiled from Terry Townsend et al., The GLOBE Climate Legislation Study (4th ed. 2014).

Updated as of: Aug 14th 2014