President Donald Trump apparently really doesn’t want to face youth suing the United States government over climate change. His administration is seeking an appeal even before the lawsuit goes to trial. One plaintiff said the motion is “an attempt to cover up the federal government’s long-running collusion with the fossil fuel industry.”
Trump’s administration wishes to appeal a November 2016 judge order; Judge Ann Aiken rejected attempts from the government and fossil fuel industry to dismiss the case, Juliana v. United States, allowing it to proceed because “federal courts too often have been cautious and overly deferential in the area of environmental law, and the world has suffered for it.” Now the Trump administration is seeking to undo that victorious moment for the 21 kids involved in the lawsuit, who range from ages nine to 20. Business Insider pointed out such a request for appeal is rare; it generally doesn’t come until after a final ruling.
But one motion isn’t enough for Trump’s administration – they filed one to put off trial preparation too. They also requested expedited review of their motions; it seems a January 2017 letter from the youth plaintiffs might have them scared. The kids requested that records regarding climate change and communication between the fossil fuel industry and the government be retained; the government says this is burdensome.
Plaintiff 20-year-old Alex Loznak said in a statement, “My generation cannot wait for the truth to be revealed. These documents must be uncovered with all deliberate speed, so that our trial can force federal action on climate change.”
The youth plaintiffs are not requesting money in their lawsuit; rather, they wish to accelerate the government’s action to battle climate change. Judge Aiken said they want the government to “cease their permitting, authorizing, and subsidizing of fossil fuels and, instead, move to swiftly phase out CO2 emissions.”
Images via Our Children’s Trust Facebook