WASHINGTON - Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and Reps. Peter DeFazio and Earl Blumenauer have filed a brief with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals supporting the Juliana v. United States youth plaintiffs in their landmark climate lawsuit and urging the court to allow the pending case to proceed to trial.
“From the present flooding and arctic temperatures in the East to the wildfires and droughts in the West, climate change is not just an impending threat that risks the future of this Nation, but a present crisis.," the lawmakers wrote in their brief. "The lives of our children, our grandchildren, and generations that will be born to them are at a constitutional crossroads.
"The federal judiciary has the power to alter the path for these Youth Plaintiffs by assessing the constitutionality of the conduct of its coequal branches,” they added. “We respectfully ask the Court to uphold its duty under the United States Constitution and grant Plaintiffs a trial to present their evidence and secure their constitutional rights to life, liberty, property, and public trust resources.”
The friend-of-the-court, or amicus, brief was one of 15 amicus briefs filed in support of the Juliana v. United States youth plaintiffs, 11 of whom are Oregonians – from Eugene, Beaverton, Bend, Roseburg and Oakland in Douglas County. More information can be found here.
The Oregon lawmakers were also joined by U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse and U.S. Reps. Debra Haaland and Rashida Tlaib in filing their brief.
The full text of the lawmakers’ court filing can be found here.