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250+ Groups Petition Biden Administration to Drop Opposition to Youth Climate Lawsuit

HeadlineJun 22, 2023

A court in Montana has heard closing arguments in a landmark lawsuit brought by 16 young people who say their state violated their constitutional rights to a clean environment, as it pushed policies promoting the burning of coal, oil and gas. A witness for the plaintiffs testified that Montana has never denied a permit for a fossil fuel project. A ruling from a Montana state district judge is expected sometime in July; it could set an important precedent for similar lawsuits pending in other states.

Meanwhile, a coalition of more than 250 groups delivered a petition to Attorney General Merrick Garland Wednesday, demanding the Department of Justice end its opposition to allowing a youth climate lawsuit against the U.S. government to proceed in court. The petition was signed by over 50,000 people. This is John Beard Jr., executive director of the Port Arthur Community Action Network in Texas, which is supporting the children’s climate lawsuit.

John Beard Jr.: “Our youth will be living here long after us. Therefore, we must support their quest to secure climate justice and protect their constitutional rights. The youth across the nation, especially youth living in environmental justice communities, like the frontline Gulf Coastal communities of color in my own part of the country, Port Arthur, Texas, continue to suffer harm from the climate crisis, including pollution, and also from social and environmental injustice.”

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