Monday, October 26, 2009

We're Doomed--A Continuing Series

The United States Courts of Appeals for the Second and Fifth Circuits recently have reversed lower court dismissals and allowed government (2nd Cir.) and private individuals (5th Cir.) to sue companies for excessive greenhouse gas emissions:
And that means contingency fees. And thus the promise of copycat lawsuits. . . We're off to the races in private party climate change class action litigation!
More legislating by lawyers--an end-run around policy and subverting democracy.

(via Moonbattery)


suek said...

I don't know enough - lawyers who make laws are particularly destructive to democracy - but...maybe this _could_ be a good thing? Maybe somehow defense lawyers could require proof of damage by "excessive" CO2 outputs?

Please don't destroy my small glimmer of hope on this!

Other than that...disaster!

Carl said...

suek: Well, the two opinions reversed lower courts that had dismissed the claims as not political, not appropriate for judicial resolution. On remand, I think plaintiffs still will have to show "standing," which includes injury in fact, causation and redressability. If the plaintiffs make it through that, they still will, as you say, have to prove damages.