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
- CO2 Act (2000) limits CO2 emissions from fossil fuel use for heating and transport to 10% below 1990 levels over the period from 2008-2012 and further reduce targets after 2012. [en; ge; fr; it]
- Ordinance on CO2 imputation (2005) regulates the allocation of international emissions reductions to the reduction target established by the Act. [en; fr; ge; it]
- Ordinance on emissions trading (2007) sets the rules for companies and people for emissions trading. [en; fr; ge; it]
- Ordinance on CO2 (2007) [fr; ge; it]
- Ordinance on CO2 Compensation (2010) [fr; ge; it]
- CO2 Emission Regulations for New Cars and Vehicle Performance Standards 2012 (English) subjects newly registered cars to the overall average value of CO2 emissions of 130 g CO2/km by 2015.
- 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. [en; fr; ge; it]
Ordinances relative to tax incentives:
- Ordinance on the incentive tax on volatile organic compounds [en; fr; ge; it]
- Ordinance on heating oil [fr; ge; it]
- Ordinance on gas [fr; ge; it]
- Ordinance on airplanes emissions [fr; ge; it]
- Energy Act (1998) [ge; fr; it]
- Ordinance on Energy (1998) [fr; ge; it]
- Federal Act on Nuclear Energy (2003) regulates the peaceful use of nuclear energy. Its main purpose is to protect humans and end environment against the risks of nuclear energy. [en; fr; ge; it]
- Ordinance on Nuclear Energy (2004) [en; fr; ge; it]
- Energy Strategy 2050 2011 (German) develops a long term energy policy aimed focusing on energy efficiency potentials and the potentials of hydropower and new renewable energy sources.
- SwissEnergy Programme (2013/2014) promotes progressive projects relating to energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy. [en; de; fr; it]
- The Mineral Oil Tax Reduction on Biofuels and Natural Gas 2008 (French) amended the Mineral Oil Tax Act to allow private sector Swiss firms to import and commercialize bioethanol under certain conditions. It also provides tax incentives for low carbon fuels.
Forests and Land Use
- Federal Act on Forest (1991) prescribes sustainable forest management, bans deforestation unless an equal area of afforested land replaces the equivalent measures to improve biodiversity are implemented. [ge; fr; it; en]
- Ordinance on Forests [en; fr, ge, it]
Environmental Impact Assessment
- Federal Heavy Vehicle Act (2000) [ge, fr, it] and Federal Heavy Vehicle Fee Ordinance (2001) applies to road vehicles over 3.5 tons and aims at internalizing the external costs of road transportation, especially goods in transit through Switzerland. [ge; fr; it]
- Federal Act on the Protection of Waters (esp. art. 6-28) [en; fr; ge; it]
- Ordinance on the Protection of Waters [fr; ge; it]
- Federal Act on Nature Protection [fr; ge; it]
- Ordinance on Nature Protection [fr; ge; it]
Local, State, and Regional Legislation and Initiatives
- Adaptation to Climate Change in Switzerland (2012)
- Environmental and Spatial Planning Projects Cableway (2013)
- Environmental Report (2013)
- Swiss Environmental Law: A Brief Guide (2013)
- Swiss Climate Policy at a Glance (2014)
- Swiss National Forest Programme 2004 (English) describes the priority areas of guaranteeing the forest’s protective functions, conserving biodiversity, improving the economic viability of the forestry sector, strengthening the value chain for wood and protecting forest soils, trees, and drinking water.
- Feed-in Remuneration at Cost Tariff for Electricity from Renewable Energy Sources 2009 (French) encourages investment in electricity generation from renewable sources by bridging the price difference between fossil-fuel based electricity production and electricity from renewable energy sources.
- Adaptation to Climate Change in Switzerland (2012) provides an adaptation framework and action plan. [de; fr; en]
- International Energy Agency Statistics – Switzerland (English)
- Switzerland: CO2 emissions from gaseous fuel consumption (English)
- Recommendations for OcCC Swiss Climate Policy “Post-2012” (French) (pdf)
- Comprehensive Review of Energy Policy in Switzerland (French) (pdf)
- International Energy Agency Statistics – Switzerland (English)
- Klimaportal – Platform of the Swiss Academy of Sciences (German)
- Advisory Body on Climate Change (English)
- Geneva Environment Network
- Greenpeace Switzerland
- Green Cross International
- Friends of the Earth Switzerland
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