The paper addresses the capacity of democracies to tackle the challenge of climate change. Even though national democracies tend to short-termism and are not always able to deal with global, complicated, and intergenerational challenges such as climate change, institutional innovations present themselves as a better solution than more technocratic or authoritarian forms of climate governance.
Firstly, the contribution examines the tension between democracy and climate change and identifies short-termism as a central problem. Secondly, form a public law perspective, the article presents different institutional solutions driven by constitutional courts and posterity impact assessments that can help democracies to overcome said challenge. Lastly, the specific case of independent climate bodies is analysed. These diverse bodies can be conceived through a series of public law criteria. Public law offers a framework for these structures to thrive as an institutional solution to the challenge of climate change.