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'Climate Kids' Lawsuit Against US Government Cleared For Trial


In November 2016, five of the 21 youth plaintiffs in a federal climate change lawsuit against the federal government, including from left Sahara Valentine, 11, Avery McRae (not visible), 10, Jacob Lebel, 19, Miko Vergun, 15, Kelsey Julianna, 20, and Zealand Bell, 11, hug on the steps the Wayne Morse U.S. Courthouse in Eugene after U.S. District Judge Ann Aiken rejected requests from the federal government and trade groups representing many of the world’s largest energy companies to dismiss their lawsuit.

In November 2016, five of the 21 youth plaintiffs in a federal climate change lawsuit against the federal government, including from left Sahara Valentine, 11, Avery McRae (not visible), 10, Jacob Lebel, 19, Miko Vergun, 15, Kelsey Julianna, 20, and Zealand Bell, 11, hug on the steps the Wayne Morse U.S. Courthouse in Eugene after U.S. District Judge Ann Aiken rejected requests from the federal government and trade groups representing many of the world’s largest energy companies to dismiss their lawsuit.

Chris Pietsch/The Register-Guard

The so-called “climate kids” again have had their novel case against the federal government cleared for trial.

A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday unanimously rejected the government’s request for an order that would have directed a judge to dismiss a climate lawsuit filed by 21 youths ages 10 to 21, along with well-known climate scientist James Hanson. Six of the plaintiffs are from Eugene; 11 live in Oregon.

The plaintiffs allege that their constitutional rights are being violated by a government that has known about the dangers of climate change for decades, but nonetheless promotes fossil fuel production while failing to protect the nation’s natural resources.

The federal lawsuit seeks a court order that requires the government to drastically and quickly reduce carbon dioxide emissions that climate scientists say cause global warming.

Read the whole story at The Register-Guard.

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