First Nations Elders Launch Climate Change Lawsuit Against Australian Government

Two Torres Strait Islander elders, Wadhuam (maternal uncle) Paul Kabai and Wadhuam Pabai Pabai, are taking the Australian government to court in a landmark class action class, arguing that the federal government have a legal responsibility to ensure their people are not harmed by the climate crisis.

Kabai and Pabai live on the remote islands of Boigu and Saibai in Gudamalulgal in the Torres Strait. If global temperatures rise by more than 1.5 degrees Celsius, many islands in Gudamalulgal will become uninhabitable, meaning Torres Strait Islanders would become Australia’s first climate refugees.

This will be the first climate class action brought by First Nations Peoples in Australia.

2SER Breakfast’s Willy Russo was joined by Brett Spiegel, principal lawyer at Phi Finney McDonald and the primary solicitor representing Pabai and Kabai. 


Photo credit: Talei Elu

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