21 young people are suing the American government and President Obama for allegedly violating their constitutional rights by causing climate change in the development and use of fossil fuels.
According to Alternet, the lawsuit, which was filed in a US District Court in Oregon, alleges,
"that, in causing climate change, the federal government has violated the youngest generation’s constitutional rights to life, liberty, property, and has failed to protect essential public trust resources," and that "Despite knowing CO2 emissions cause dangerous climate change and ocean acidification, the federal government failed to restrict those emissions and continues to authorize fossil fuel projects that amplify the danger and foreclose the opportunity to stabilize the climate system."
One of the plaintiffs, Dr. James E. Hansen, a climate scientist at Columbia University in New York, says he is, "serving as a guardian for his granddaughter and future generations." All of the plaintiffs have included their own personal stories about how they have been personally affected by environmental changes resulting from such governmental negligence.
Julia Olson, lead counsel on the case, says,
“The purpose of this is to obtain an order from a federal court requiring the United States government, including the president and specific federal agencies, to develop a national plan to protect our atmosphere and stable climate system...This lawsuit asks whether our government has a constitutional responsibility to leave a viable climate system for future generations."
What do you guys think? Does our government have a constitutional responsibility to do so? Sound off below...
The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of Ora Media, LLC its affiliates, or its employees.
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