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Climate Change Warriors’ Latest Weapon of Choice Is Litigation

By Jeremy Hodges, Lauren Leatherby and Kartikay Mehrotra
May 24, 2018

In the global fight against climate change, one tool is proving increasingly popular: litigation. From California to the Philippines, activists, governments and concerned citizens are suing the biggest polluters and national governments over the effects of climate change at a break-neck pace. “The courts are our last, best hope at this moment of irreversible harm to our planet and life on it,” said Julia Olson, an attorney for Our Children’s Trust, a legal challenge center in the U.S. that is involved in climate change litigation across 13 countries, including the U.S., Pakistan and Uganda. Cases by San Francisco and Oakland face a motion to dismiss the lawsuit today in a California federal court, where Chevron Corp., BP Plc, Exxon Mobil Corp., ConocoPhilips and Royal Dutch Shell Plc will argue that remedies and penalties for climate change are a matter for lawmakers, not a single judge.

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