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Trump administration bid to stop childrens’ climate case gets December court date

Monday, November 20, 2017 13:15
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Desdemona Despair

Trump announces U.S. withdrawal from the Paris climate accord, 2 June 107. Photo: AFP

By Karen Savage
17 November 2017

(Climate Liability News) – Attorneys for the Trump administration will have to convince a judge that pre-trial discovery in a climate change lawsuit filed against the U.S. government would cause it irreparable harm.

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals announced on Thursday that it will hear oral arguments on Dec. 11 regarding a writ of mandamus filed by the government in Juliana v United States. In that case, 21 young people are suing the Trump administration for failing to protect their future against climate change.

Attorneys for the government filed the writ of mandamus after U.S. District Court Judge Ann Aiken denied their request to have the case dismissed.

A writ of mandamus is a rarely used and even more rarely approved legal maneuver in which a superior court is asked to order a lower court or government agency to comply with the law. It is usually granted under extraordinary circumstances and is considered a legal last resort.

Appeals are normally filed after the trial is held and evidence is presented, but a mandamus appeal could allow the federal government to avoid the discovery process and have the suit dismissed. The case has been paused since July pending a decision on this and other motions.

“This Administration can respond to the limited discovery we seek, and put on its junk climate science at trial in a court of law,” said Julia Olson, co-counsel for the plaintiffs. “What it can’t do is shut the courthouse doors to real constitutional injuries brought by these young people.”

In the suit, the young plaintiffs allege the federal government has failed to protect them, their families and future generations from the effects of climate change and say that the government must enact science-based plan to protect the planet. [more]

Trump Administration Bid to Stop Kids Climate Case Gets December Court Date


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