The Bizarre Montana Climate Case

The Wall Street Journal reports that “The press is cheering a group of Montana children who prevailed this week in state court with a radical new legal theory on climate change.”

“The Montana state constitution prescribes a right to a “clean and healthful environment… An outfit called Our Children’s Trust brought a suit from 16 Montana youth who allege they are harmed by climate change and the state’s energy policies.”

“State district Judge Kathy Seeley bought the argument, striking down as unconstitutional measures that preclude the state from considering greenhouse-gas emissions as part of project approvals. The decision is more spiritual experience than legal analysis. ‘Plaintiffs’ injuries will grow increasingly severe and irreversible without science-based actions to address climate change,’ the judge wrote.”

“’Wildfire smoke and heat “adversely impact” a teenager named Grace’s “ability to play competitive soccer,’ the suit said. …A plaintiff named Georgi lamented that her ‘ability to compete and participate in Nordic skiing has been directly impacted by climate disruption,’ the complaint notes. Another plaintiff claimed, ‘bouts of depression’ about the climate and feeling ‘heartbroken and desperate.’ These young people ought to sue the adults who have misled them about climate apocalypse.”

“The plaintiff claims are so dubious that they shouldn’t survive on appeal, which Montana plans to file. But the climate left will take this strategy on the road and try to persuade ideologically sympathetic judges like Ms. Seeley to do what legislatures won’t.”


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  • John McClaughry
    published this page in EAI Blog 2023-08-24 01:55:06 -0400