Time: 16 Montana kids are suing the state over climate change. Here's what to know about the trial
A Montana judge will hear arguments in a first-of-its-kind lawsuit that will decide whether the state’s contribution to climate change violates its Constitution, which explicitly guarantees a right to a “clean and healthful environment," reports Solcyre Burga for Time.
In a nutshell:
Filed by 16 young plaintiffs, the case argues that Montana lawmakers have prioritized the interests of the fossil fuel industry over the wellbeing of future generations. While skeptics question the court's authority to mandate specific actions, the case highlights a growing urgency to address climate change and its detrimental impacts on natural resources, including water availability, agricultural yields and glacier melting.
Jonathan Adler, an environmental law professor at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, told Time he isn’t sure if the court can mandate the government to address climate change. “It really pushes the boundaries of what courts are capable of and effective at addressing,” he said.
A favorable outcome for the plaintiffs could ripple far beyond Montana by serving as a precedent for similar climate change efforts in other states. This legal victory would underscore the urgent need for governments to address climate change and could potentially lead to stronger actions and policies to mitigate its impacts.
Learn more by accessing the full story in Time.