to us to usjustice Montana It ruled in favor of a youth group that accused the government of violating the right to a “clean and healthy environment” by promoting the use of fossil fuels. A historic ruling that could change the way US courts approach related cases Climate changes.
A state law prevents environmental impacts from being considered in energy projects. So, a group of young people ages five to 22 went to court, claiming it was against Montana’s constitution, which guarantees “a clean and healthy environment for present and future generations.”
In a rare victory for environmentalists in the courts, Judge Kathy Seeley ruled the law unconstitutional in a more than 100-page ruling.
Montana has over a million people, but emits CO2 ArgentinaHome to 45 million people. The decision could have ramifications for future cases, as there are similar allegations across the country.
Throughout the investigation, young people described how they were affected by climate change. Ricky Held, 22, said his family’s livelihood has been disrupted by wildfires, extreme temperatures and drought in Montana.
“When I think of summer, I think of smoke. It sounds like a dystopia, but it’s real life,” 20-year-old Claire Vilases said in front of the court.
Julia Olson, director of the NGO Our Children’s Foundation, which represented the youth group, called the ruling “a huge victory.”
“The decision in Montana marks a turning point in this generation’s efforts to save the planet from the devastating effects of man-made climate chaos,” it said in a statement.
Montana Deputy Attorney General Michael Russell emphasized that the state recognizes the role of human activities in global warming. But he argued that experts called as witnesses were unable to quantify the extent to which Montana laws are responsible for environmental damage.
The case received national attention because it was considered “a referendum of sorts on climate change.”/AFP and W.Post
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