Youth lawsuit to demand climate change action faces industry challenge in US court
- Year: 2012
- Length: 1:38 minutes (1.5 MB)
- Format: MP3 Mono 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)
In Washington, DC today, youth from across the country fought to keep alive a lawsuit they’ve filed against the US government. Plaintiffs say EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, Interior Department Secretary Ken Salazar, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and others have failed to confront climate change and protect the environment for future generations. The suit was filed in May of last year, and today US District Court Judge Robert Wilkins heard a motion from industry groups, including the National Association of Manufacturers to dismiss the suit. Seventeen-year-old Alec Loorz is the main plaintiff in the case. He spoke to FSRN via mobile phone as he left the courthouse today.
“It’s difficult for young people because all the plaintiffs in this case are young people, most under 18. We can’t vote, there’s no way we can compete with the corporate lobbyists, so this is actually one of the main ways that we can exercise our rights.”
Loorz, who founded Kids Versus Global Warming when he was 12 years old, said their lawsuit is an attempt to break the stalemate in US Congress. It argues that the atmosphere is a public trust and lawmakers are obligated to preserve it.
“Our government has the legal responsibility to protect the atmosphere as a public trust and to protect it for future generations and for present generations. And we’re basically saying our current government has failed at that. They’ve failed to protect our atmosphere.”
The judge is expected to make a decision on whether the suit can move forward in the coming weeks.