Friday, August 17, 2018

Judge Dismisses Youth Climate Change Lawsuit in Washington State

The state judge wrote that climate change poses urgent threats, but that it should be solved by the executive and legislative branches, not the courts.

"Anthropogenic climate change caused by increased greenhouse gas emissions poses severe threats to our environment and requires urgent governmental action," the judge wrote. However, he said the state's constitution doesn't include a right to a clean environment. (Credit: Walter Siegmund/CC-SA-3.0) Click to Enlarge.
A group of young climate advocates who sued the state of Washington to force it to reduce greenhouse gas emissions lost their case on Tuesday when a judge sided with the state and agreed to dismiss it.

The judge urged them to pursue their cause through other channels.

King County Superior Court Judge Michael Scott wrote that the issues at the heart of the case are political and should be considered by the state's legislative and executive branches, not settled by its courts.

The Washington lawsuit is one of nine state-level cases involving youth advocates supported by Our Children's Trust, the group leading a federal youth lawsuit that heads to trial in a U.S. District Court in Oregon this October.  Like the federal suit, known as Juliana v. U.S., the state lawsuits accuse the government of failing to protect the children from the dangers of climate change and pushing policies that favor fossil fuel use.

The U.S. Supreme Court recently rejected a plea by the Trump administration to halt the federal trial, but in doing so, it also cautioned the lower court to tread cautiously before expanding judicial powers.

Read original at Judge Dismisses Youth Climate Change Lawsuit in Washington State

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