Children’s Climate Court Case Defeats Government Dismissal Motion, Case to Proceed to Trial

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

The Supreme Court has just overturned a government attempt to have the children’s climate court case dismissed.

Young Activists Can Sue Government Over Climate Change, Supreme Court Says

November 3, 20182:12 PM ET
JACOB PINTER

A group of young people can sue the federal government over its climate change policies, the Supreme Court said Friday. Since it was first filed in 2015, the government has requested several times that Juliana v. United States be dismissed.

“I want to trust that we are truly on track for trial without having further delays,” Kelsey Juliana, a 22-year-old plaintiff, said in a statement, “but these defendants are treating this case, our democracy, and the security of mine and future generations like it’s a game. I’m tired of playing this game.”

The Department of Justice did not respond to NPR’s request for comment.

The trial had previously been scheduled to start Oct. 29. The group Our Children’s Trust, which has provided support for the plaintiffs, said it had requested a status conference to set a new trial date.

It now could start as early as mid-November, Draheim said.

Read more: https://www.npr.org/2018/11/03/663887560/young-activists-can-sue-government-over-climate-change-supreme-court-says

The Supreme Court judgement does not mark the end of the problems faced by the plaintiffs – reading the Supreme Court judgement, there may now be a substantially increased possibility the Ninth Circuit will dismiss the case.

Although the Ninth Circuit has twice denied the Government’s request for mandamus relief, it did so without prejudice. And the court’s basis for denying relief rested, in large part, on the early stage of the litigation, the likelihood that plaintiffs’ claims would narrow as the case progressed, and the possibility of attaining relief through ordinary dispositive motions. Those reasons are, to a large extent, no longer pertinent. The 50-day trial was scheduled to begin on October 29, 2018, and is being held in abeyance only because of the current administrative stay. …

Read more: https://www.supremecourt.gov/orders/courtorders/110218zr2_8ok0.pdf

It seems a shame that this farce will be allowed to continue for now, but I think I understand the Supreme Court’s reasoning.

Lets hope the Ninth Circuit brings this matter to a speedy conclusion.

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71 thoughts on “Children’s Climate Court Case Defeats Government Dismissal Motion, Case to Proceed to Trial

  1. “Lets hope the Ninth Circuit brings this matter to a speedy conclusion.”

    I’m sure they will. Then the Supreme Court will have to hear the appeal and overturn the nutty Ninth…again.

    • A better hope might be that the case is allowed to progress through court and that the plaintiffs lose their case.

      • This is an incredibly stupid situation – since when did “children” have standing in anything? They are children, under control of their parents until they grow up. The truth is “children” are being used by vermin lawyers to push a Marxism agenda.

        • I read the Supreme Court statement – their decision was purely procedural. Basically “oh this is the wrong point in the process for you to ask us for relief, you gotta ask the 9th Circuit, but if that doesn’t work out you can come back to us then.”

          Courts always love to punt the ball if they’re given half the chance. That’s all that happened here.

  2. By letting them proceed without injunctive relief from SCOTUS, it will finally expose the stupidity of this approach of trying to use the courts to achieve what the political branches will not provide the environmental movement.

    The immense positive benefits of fossil fuel use to our society (and to those children who are being manipulated by adults) can not be dismissed or ignored in the adversarial judicial process as they are by the IPCC where dissent from consensus and skepticism are suppressed to achieve one-sided, partisan narratives. Additionally, the discovery process and the cross-examination of experts will lay bare the large uncertainties within the temperature data sets, false claims of unprecedented weather events, and the hand-tuned, fudged climate model outputs.

    All this was predicted by Michael Crichton in his book State of Fear.

    Furthermore, if the plaintiffs do “win” with this liberal Oregon federal judge, it will lay the groundwork for an eventual SCOTUS ruling reining in judicial activism and attempts by Liberal judges to exceed separation of powers and legislate from the bench. The Conservative majority on SCOTUS will ensure that is the ultimate outcome, which of course is why the Left tried so hard to stop Kavanaugh’s confirmation last month.

    • Does that mean that I can file suit against the policy of debasing the Dollar through the FED? During my 70+ years, the FED has caused prices to surge, cutting the value of the Dollar by around 90%. And, the FED’s lower than market interest rates (known as financial repression) steal possible earnings on my life savings.

      I could bring my grand-kids in on the suit, since they would have to live under this economy and society destroying influence.

      • Sure you can, but understand that even fewer people understand the inflationary fraud perpetrated by the government than understand the climate disaster fraud perpetrated by the government. Better find some really impoverished children to front this suit and simplify your argument so anybody can understand how their pockets are being picked. Then find a celebrity, a couple of sympathetic journalists, and a leftist congress-critter to promote it.

      • Plus, Your grand-kids are only going to get a Dime ($0.10) when in fact they should have gotten a Dollar ($1.00) when you pass on.

    • I have not seen the basis for the government’s challenge or the SCOTUS rejection of the challenge – that would have been helpful info in this post.

      If the challenge was based on standing, it is understandable why it was rejected.

      It does seem extremely unlikely that a lawsuit that attempts to remove matters of Federal lawmaking from Congress and substitute policymaking by the courts will prevail, whether at the appeals court of SCOTUS. The basic complaint is that the kids don’t like the policy. Guess what most people don’t like a lot of government policies for a variety of reasons, but it is not the job of the courts to make policy, only to enforce the laws and the Constitution.

  3. Well, they have to prove the case beyond any reasonable doubt.
    Can anything that might happen in 20 or more years, that never happened before (i.e. no president available) be proved beyond a reasonable doubt?
    I’d say No.

    • “Well, they have to prove the case beyond any reasonable doubt.”

      No, they don’t. That is the threshold in criminal trials, not civil actions. “The preponderance of the evidence” would suffice here, as it does in many outlandish decisions against companies for “cancer-causing” products, “product defects”, etc.

      That said, if the government doesn’t absolutely destroy the Plaintiff arguments with plain facts, climate history, or just plain uncertainty, I’m going to be very disappointed. This may be as close to “red team/blue team” as we get.

        • There s a host of remedies that do not include money. But yes, money judgments are intimidating to others.
          A key question at this time is whether the publicity generated from such a trial is more harmful to the plaintiff or the respondent.

      • Ok, civil case, but there is no equivalency with the cancer case in which person had to prove that was smoking in the past and that has suffered or is suffering now from cancer.
        You can’t go to court and ask for demages now because your neighborhood may get so polluted by the cars exhaust fumes, unless everyone buys electrical vehicle, that sometime in the future you might get asthma.
        Or at least you can try and we’ll see how you get on.

      • What about all of the exculpatory evidence? For example, the laws of physics. In what Universe can the laws of man override the laws of physics?

        I sure hope the defense team is on the ball and calls people like Mann, Schmidt, Hansen and others to the stand as hostile witnesses and then rips their ‘expertise’ apart as they fumble the most basic scientific principles. Sure they will lie, except that perjury is also a crime and as always, the coverup is worse than the crime which in this case is supporting, encouraging and enabling extortion by the UNFCCC which is exactly what RICO was designed to address.

        The basic tenet of extortion is ‘give me money or something bad will happen to you’. This sure sounds like the mantra of the alarmists driven by the broken science of the IPCC in support of the broken agenda of the UNFCCC.

      • It is going to be a matter of proof, it is a matter of how laws get enacted and enforced. Courts cannot make policy or enact laws.

        There is nothing in the Constitution that precludes the government from making laws, or not making laws, that have environmental consequences. As we should all have figured out, just about any imaginable law can create some kind of environmental consequence, good or bad, large or insignificant, or anywhere in between. That’s what Congress is empowered to do – enact laws which create and enforce policy. The voters can always elect a different Congress – today is probably going to be yet another instance of that happening, as it has ever since the Constitution was ratified in 1788.

    • No. This is a civil trial. Preponderance of the evidence is enough for most matters in civil trial.
      See more here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burden_of_proof_(law)#Preponderance_of_the_evidence

      Criminal trails require Beyond a Reasonable Doubt for conviction.

      If the judge is to decide that someone’s civil liberties are to be curtailed (as may occur if she tells people to stop using fossil fuels for their livelihood, then the next higher standard, Clear and convincing evidence, would need to be met.

      This is the real fire the Environmentalists are playing with. They could get burned badly in the final outcome. If they get the ruling they want in the lower courts, the Supreme Court could set a precedent that the higher standard of Clear and Convincing Evidence applies where “environmental justice” is demanded in the ruling and other’s rights are curtailed. That would set a burden of proof the Climate Hustler’s could not provide with their hand-tuned model outputs and the large uncertainties that exist within them and the assumptions they’ve made along the way.

      • The other thing about civil cases is that the net effects have to be considered. In California governments vs oil companies, Judge Alsup made it clear that the benefits of fossil fuels had to be considered. link

        If it weren’t for the benefits of fossil fuels, many of the plaintiffs in the Children’s Case would have died in early childhood.

    • Civil law has a lower standard of decision making.
      Now is the time for those who are rational, seeing the truth about the benefits of fossil fuels and nonsensical madness of the climate change corruption, to stand and fight.

  4. These leftists are going to keep on coming with these lawsuits until one of them hits.

    What American idiots don’t realize is that once Big Oil has to pay bazillions of dollars, they are going to pass that cost alone to those of us who use fossil fuels or items made with petroleum. In short, we are all going to pay once one of these lawsuits wins.

      • Big Oil is not a defendant in this case.

        This is an attempt to get a known liberal federal judge to legislate from the bench. The conservatives on the Supreme Court likely have had enough of the liberal judicial activism and are chomping at the bit to smack down this kind of growing activism (a violation of separation of powers) within the lower courts. Many of then-Judge Kavanaugh’s Appellate Court written opinions suggest this is what will happen.

      • The money, if taken via court, would likely be placed in a “trust”.
        A pal of the Judge would just happen to be available to act as trustee.

    • Even more of a concern is that the bazillions will be used to promote Marxism/Communism. That would be bad. Getting a spy meter into every home will be just the start.

  5. I have not been able to find a copy of the actual suit as filed. Does anyone know if it set forth requests for damages? Is it like a lawsuit that has specific demands and required reparations as in a suit to recover damages? If it just says the US hasn’t done enough and they prevail how will the ruling be enforced?

  6. One advantage of this latest move is that the Dems cannot claim that the final decision is due to a biased SCOTUS, when that is the very court which earlier refused to dismiss the case.

  7. I can just see the opening argument by the kids lawyers et al, that we need to be doing more to ‘fight’ climate change, that we really need to do more to ‘battle’ global warming, as if this is a boxing match, and that CO2 is the only opponent in the ring with natural variation. The house of cards straw man that the warmistas have built up the last 30 years can’t hold up, and will invariably be dealt a final blow by the climate itself at some point. Nothing ever heads in one direction for very long it seems, as we see in the climate record already. If CO2 swamps everything else, it will require extraordinary proof.

    Maybe this is good. It will lay bare the evidence on both sides of the fence, and it doesn’t really mater what decision the Ninth Circuit Court will make, since I couldn’t see it being upheld at the Supreme Court. Perhaps this is the start of the Red-Blue debate we are needing? And even if the SC upheld it, if it didn’t warm as predicted by 2030 when the world is doomed to fall apart, then it would look pretty stupid making any decision in favor of the kids. And of course it knows this, and why a final arbitrator could never make a final decision regarding such. The SC would only have to uphold and state back what the IPPC already acknowledges in their opening statement, “The climate system is a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.” Case closed!

  8. Ok,what if I,using the same quality of logic and evidence as these activists, feel that these particular children will become menaces toward society when they are in their 5os..
    Shall we sue them now?
    What damages are they imaging?

  9. Reading the article it suggests at least one of these “activists” is 11 years old. If I were that childs’ parent I would be questioning who was influencing my child in to becoming an “activist” because I would consider that to be a form of child abuse. Seems to me that the parents of the minors are in support of this abuse.

    • This is all a terrible joke. I suspect that the Court is calling this as a bluff.

      The mother from FL quoted thinks this; “And then there’s also the AMENDMENT with life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. One’s life is at risk with health and with having to leave our home” is a legitimate reason to file this suit.”
      Evacuating a flood plain due to a hurricane is a good reason to file a suit to force the US government to destroy the economy.

      Think about this for a moment (if it takes so long as that).
      And she adds that the suit is predicated on this;

      PUBLIC TRUST DOCTRINE
      Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary
      The principle that certain natural and cultural resources are preserved for public use, and that the government owns and must protect and maintain these resources for the public’s use. For example, under this doctrine, the government holds title to all submerged land under navigable waters. Thus, any use or sale of such land must be in the public interest.

      The 9th will need to dismiss this, as the US does not own air or ocean water (seems to this rank amateur).

  10. What are their specific damages that is attributed to climate change that was caused by the federal government? Extreme weather events are not caused by climate change but are part of our current climate. Weather cycles are also part of our current climate and are not part of climate change.

    Based on the paleoclimate record and the work done with models, one can conclude that the climate change we have been experienced is caused by the sun and the oceans over which mankind and even the federal government have no control. There is no real evidence that CO2 has any effect on climate and plenty of scientific rationale to support the idea that the climate sensitivity of CO2 is zero. Clearly Mother Nature is at least in part if not entirely to blame here given that there actually are damages. I believe that it is a matter of law that one cannot sue Mother Nature. Even if you could, it would be impossible to collect on a judgement against Mother Nature.

    The IPCC started out with a wide range of guesses as to the climate sensitivity of CO2. After more than two decades of effort the IPCC has been unable to change the range of their guesses one IOTA. So according to the IPCC”s own work the percentage of recent climate change attributed to mankind cannot be determined. So hence the percentage of any damages attributed to mankind cannot yet be determined. At the very least the hearing should be delayed until the portion of the damages attributed to mankind can be determined.

  11. I have not seen the papers either. But it seems the issue will be the remedies required. I would expect that in order to get remedies ordered, it would have to be shown that they will have an effect on the problem.

    The activists of course want reduced US carbon emissions. However, it is clearly provable on grounds of simple arithmetic that any unilateral reductions in US emissions will be too small to have any effect on climate. The US is only doing about 5 billion tons a year, and falling, out of a global total of 37 billion a year, and rising.

    So even were the US to stop emitting altogether, the global total of emissions would continue and would continue rising at levels which, if the theory is correct, will lead to unabated global warming.

    Therefore it is hard to see any court ordering the remedy of reduced US emissions.

    The most it could rationally order would be international engagement to work for a global treaty of some sort. But here we encounter the Paris problem. The problem with Paris was not so much that the theory underlying it was wrong. The problem was that if the theory was correct, it was an ineffective response, because it did not mandate reductions which, on the theory, would be big enough to have any effect on the problem.

    So I cannot see what possible remedies are open to the court to grant to the plaintiffs.

    This is before you even get to the issues about separation of powers which doomed the Exxon suits ans they did all the other global warming suits. And which will equally operate here too.

    A thoroughly wrong headed suit, one would think. We shall see.

    • “The activists of course want reduced US carbon emissions”. That is already happening, but I suspect that a drastic reduction would be devastating for “activists”, what would the poor lambs do with themselves?

  12. Twenty-one young plaintiffs (“plaintiffs”) brought suit against Obama and United States officials and agencies (“defendants”) alleging that defendants have contributed to climate change in violation of the plaintiffs’ constitutional rights.

    Logically, the plaintiffs must believe that all prior climate change was acceptable and the current one is not. Since global warming began over 300 years ago, alarmists pushed back human-caused climate change to the beginning of the Industrial Revolution in Britain at about 1760.

    It’s ironic that plaintiffs are now complaining about industrial activities that are responsible for the high standard of living that they now claim are endangered by it.

    In essence plaintiffs demand the climate enjoyed by earlier generations, not the unknown future one.
    Would they prefer the Little Ice Age (1350-1850AD) – bitter cold, famine, and plague? Or the last 100,000-year Ice Age (glacial period) from 110,000BC to about 9700BC? All Canada was covered with mile-thick ice sheets and seas level dropped 400 feet? Or maybe the Eemian interglacial 125,000 years ago? The Eemian, like the six preceding interglacials of the past million years, only lasted 15,000 years and featured average temperatures ten degrees warmer and sea level thirty feet higher than present.

    Plaintiffs can’t sue China (CO2 double the US), Europe (equal), and Asia without China (equal), but the US is only 14% (and falling) of the world CO2 total. If plaintiffs win, nothing changes, but let’s pretend; the next glacial period starts as predicted in 5,000 years and the world can’t adapt because renewable energy systems can’t fill food and energy needs as ice sheets again cover Canada and northern Europe/Asia.

    But fear not. The world has already saved itself. It’s just too bad that so many are too ignorant to appreciate its resiliency.

  13. It is not clear to me what outcome these “children” want.
    Do they want a ban on the use of all fossil fuels?
    If they were to get this, have they thought that through: ie: they will be freezing to death while starving in a cave.
    So what are they trying to achieve? Color me puzzled.

    • Yep.
      Long time past for some stories showing the way the world looks if the anti-scientific climate alarmism of the company consensus prevails.

  14. I would imagine in any court case there would be expert witnesses. So who decides who is an expert? In the current political climate, it is not likely for a real expert to express any views that are counter to the narrative. Who was Galileo’s expert witness and how did that turn out?

  15. Have I misunderstood something?
    Skimmed through the case and found if was files August 12th 2015 with this summary:

    Youth Plaintiffs Asserted Constitutional Claims Against Federal Government for Failure to Reduce Carbon Dioxide Emissions. Twenty-one individual plaintiffs, all age 19 or younger, filed a lawsuit in the federal district court for the District of Oregon against the United States, the president, and various federal officials and agencies. The individuals were joined by the non-profit organization Earth Guardian and a plaintiff identified as “Future Generations,” which is represented by Dr. James Hansen, a climate scientist and former director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, who also submitted a declaration in support of the complaint. The plaintiffs asked the court to compel the defendants to take action to reduce carbon dioxide emissions so that atmospheric CO2 concentrations will be no greater than 350 parts per million by 2100. The plaintiffs alleged that the “nation’s climate system” was critical to their rights to life, liberty, and property, and that the defendants had violated their substantive due process rights by allowing fossil fuel production, consumption, and combustion at “dangerous levels.” The plaintiffs also asserted an equal protection claim based on the government’s denial to them of fundamental rights afforded to prior and present generations. They also asserted violations of rights secured by the Ninth Amendment, which the plaintiffs said protects “the right to be sustained by our country’s vital natural systems, including our climate system.” The plaintiffs also alleged that defendants failed to fulfill their obligations under the public trust doctrine.

    So even President Obama and his administration did not do enough damage – what are James Hansen’s children thinking of?

    • 350.org anyone? I thought they were involved in this along with Dr. Hansen, when I first read about it a year or two ago. I do not think anyone in 350.org has any scientific training/background including their world leadership group. I think I read that Obama’s Green Jobs Czar and chief Communist Van Jones was also connected with 350.org. IMHO these people are dangerous ignorant environmentalists.

  16. Carl Fris-Hansen: “The plaintiffs asked the court to compel the defendants to take action to reduce carbon dioxide emissions so that atmospheric CO2 concentrations will be no greater than 350 parts per million by 2100.”

    In essence, the complaint is asking that the US start a vast nuclear war by dropping nuclear weapons on 15,000 or so fossil fuel sites in order to stop the world from continuing on it’s rise in CO2 in the atmosphere.

    The only alternative which might be accepted is for the US to fritter away a few hundred billion in enticements in an attempt to help the least developed countries develop quicker by building power plants and other “first world” amenities to bring up their per capita gross developed product to a level that would limit birth rates and eventually cause population growth to stop. That is a pretty clear cut result that could fit the complaint, if there was any way to make it work. A good argument can be made that we are already doing that, so the suit is baseless. The world, not just the USA, has made great progress over that last 2 decades in bringing people out of poverty.

    Wars, starvation, extinctions, and civil strife have marked all the sudden climate changes in human history.

  17. The legal reasoning could easily lead to suing WUWT because it allows anyone to comment and beyond.

  18. Unicorn-meister. Mark Jacobson, says he will be giving expert testimony. If so, I hope he can be cross examined with some pointed questions.

    https://twitter.com/mzjacobson/status/1058763757596270592

    I will now testify on why US can move to 100% clean, #renewable energy in all sectors at lower cost than fossils while creating more jobs+security & largely eliminating 62K US #air pollution deaths/yr and US contribution to #global warming of black carbon-CO2-O3-CH4 from energy

  19. If the suit was to result in an award of $$$, why would it not be split between every US citizen?

    What right would the court have to only award damages to specific people when supposedly all are harmed.

    And if everyone gets paid in the end no one gets paid. It is simply a form of tax.

  20. I have yet to have anyone explain to me how and why minors were given standing in this case. When they lose, and are expected to pay court costs and damages, the minors will not have any assets that can be attached. That is, they have nothing to lose by making outrageous claims. Justice is not being served by allowing minors to sue. I hope that their parents will be held financially responsible.

  21. This plaintiff Kelsey Juliana better know that in a court case she will need to bring viable evidence to back her case which will be based on the global warming affects of CO2. Models just won’t cut it.

  22. An Unholy Alliance: the UN, Soros, and the Francis Papacy – Elizabeth Yore

    This information should be seen and heard by as many people as possible and it has nothing to do with religion.

    “If You Control Carbon You Control Life”

        • John, you really have a problem with people expressing provably correct and important ideas that you admit you can’t contradict.

          You should get it checked.

          [And you should take a hike, anti-vaccination has NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS THREAD- Anthony]

          • LOL simple-t, your nonsense is not “provably correct”, indeed it’s just the opposite. But the “problem” is every thread you go into you hijack into a platform to spout your anti-vaxxer BS. This forum isn’t about vaccines, the topic of this post isn’t about vaccines, the specific post you were replying to wasn’t about vaccines and yet here you are hijacking it to spam yet more OT BS about vaccines yet again. The mods don’t let the chemtrails idiots get away with that, they shouldn’t let you either, IMHO. There are anti-vaxxer forums where your anti-vaxxer BS would be on topic, I suggest you go to one of them instead of spamming this place with your OT nonsense.

          • There is no such thing as “anti vaxxer”; this is a BS term typically used by NPC.

            There are non believers in the vaccine cult. Pseudo science pushed by huge corporations and a well organized fascistic “medical” corporation with the help of “experts” in laws and other buffoons is 100% on topic here.

          • Yes there is, look in the mirror you are an anti-vaxxer. Take your anti-scientific anti-vaxxer conspiracy nonsense to the appropriate forum. This is not that forum, so please stop hijacking and spamming threads here.

          • Also, I see you reference the meme NPC, but you clearly don’t understand it. It’s one more thing you merely need to look in the nearest mirror to see an example of. You see, NPCs are marked by their limited programming. Whether that be “Orangeman bad” or in your case “Vaccines bad”. NPCs, regardless of the actual topic of conversation, reply based on their limited programming. Every thread, no matter the actual topic, you reply with you limited program of anti-vaxxer nonsense.

  23. This just goes to show that the effects that bad science can have on society can be far-reaching. In this case, the plaintiffs in the case are assuming that all the scientific propaganda they’ve been fed about CO2 being a greenhouse gas is valid. That’s just not so, and taxpayer money is going to have to be spent on trying this spurious case and others like it.

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