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All around the world, Millennials and Gen Zers are starting to bring lawsuits against their governments challenging the “legality” of years of climate inaction using similar theories as being alleged in the U.S. “kids” climate case pending in the U.S. That case is currently under review by an appeals court in Oregon, which heard arguments two weeks ago on whether it can go forward — the judges were reported to be sympathetic but skeptical because of the novelty of the young plaintiffs’ arguments. A decision in the U.S. case is expected by the end of the summer.
Why This Matters: Young people are the force behind the most impactful social movements, and this one is no exception. But they are not stopping at marching and school strikes, these young people are availing themselves of all the ways of forcing government change, including litigation. These legal actions are coordinated by the organization Our Children’s Trust, which is helping to streamline the cases and ensure the best science and advocacy are brought to bear in each country. They are starting to have successes in several countries, which is good news for the global climate crisis, and according to legal experts, could even have a positive impact on U.S. litigation.
The Netherlands: Last October, a Dutch Court of Appeals ruled that the government must do more to combat climate change — the decision, in favor of the Dutch NGO Urgenda, recognized the “grave danger” of climate change and called for the government to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to at least 25% lower than 1990 levels, by 2020.
A tree surgeon protesting inaction on climate change by the British government on Friday climbed the scaffolding surrounding Big Ben in a costume dressed as Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson and unfurled a rainbow flag that read “No Pride on a dead planet.” He has a point there. The climate activist group the Extinction Rebellion […]
A new stadium is a major economic boon and a huge financial commitment for the cities and sports teams that build them — and as a result, increasingly climate change impacts on these facilities are being taken into account in the building process. The Washington Post reported last week that if sea levels were to rise 5 or 6 feet, numerous arenas and sports facilities in the United States would likely experience flooding including “TD Garden in Boston, Citi Field in New York, MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, Petco Park in San Diego, Del Mar Racetrack in California, and Oracle Park in San Francisco” with huge economic consequences.
Why This Matters: Because stadiums and arenas are so expensive and so iconic — think Fenway Park or Yankee Stadium — the builders have to confront today the question of climate impacts such as sea-level rise and extreme heat projected well into the future.