Youth Climate Lawsuit

Youth plaintiffs Alex Loznak, a Roseburg High School graduate, and Jacob Lebel of Green walk together after a hearing in the landmark Juliana v. U.S. climate change lawsuit in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco in December.

The climate lawsuit brought by 21 young people can proceed to trial, following Wednesday’s decision in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

The three-judge panel unanimously ruled against the Donald Trump administration’s petition to have the case dismissed. clearing the way for the case go to trial in U.S. District Court.

When reached by phone Wednesday, Eric Grant, the deputy assistant attorney general representing the U.S. government in the case, declined to comment.

The 21 plaintiffs, including Alex Loznak and Jacob Lebel of Douglas County, claim the federal government knew about climate change for decades, but continued to promote fossil fuel production

They ask the Trump administration to institute a national science-based climate recovery program.

Lebel told The News-Review he’s very happy about the decision.

“It’s a good conclusion to this little side trip we took to the 9th Circuit Court for the Trump administration’s desire to delay this trial for as long as they possibly could and avoid the evidence we are going to bring to this trial,” Lebel said.

The federal government had claimed the evidence discovery process was too burdensome and the case should not go to trial. But the judges wrote in a statement the administration did not establish that it would be harmed by the discovery process.

“There is enduring value in the orderly administration of litigation by the trial courts, free of needless appellate interference,” the judges wrote. “If appellate review could be invoked whenever a district court denied a motion to dismiss, we would be quickly overwhelmed with such requests, and the resolution of cases would be unnecessarily delayed.”

Lebel said it’s frustrating the Trump administration’s motion delayed the trial, which was originally set for Feb. 5, but he’s grateful the case will move forward.

“This trial is super important because we’ll have the best scientists on the planet talking about the impacts of climate change on our forest ecosystems, on severe weather, flooding, biodiversity, coral reefs, ocean acidification, social impacts and national security,” Lebel said.

Julia Olson, executive director and chief legal counsel of Our Children’s Trust and co-counsel for youth plaintiffs, said she will ask the District Court for a trial date in 2018.

“We will put the federal government’s dangerous energy system and climate policies on trial for infringing the constitutional rights of young people,” she said in a press release announcing the decision.

Editor’s Note: Alex Loznak is the son of News-Review senior reporter Carisa Cegavske.

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Business, Natural Resources and Outdoors Reporter

Emily Hoard is the business, outdoors and natural resources reporter for The News-Review. She can be reached at 541-957-4217 or by email at Follow her on Twitter @hoard_emily.

(4) comments


Newsflash, I know this is a feel good case for you but there is no constitutional right to compel the government to "do something" about climate change. That is not how the constitution works. It protects the people from the government. It does not compel government action. Thus, the case is a complete waste of taxpayer dollars. The only result will be a lot of preening by climate activists. Just an extension of their Facebook account. The district court judge should be impeached, not rewarded. If the mid-term election does not go against Trump, the 9th Circuit may be broken up to limit this lawless behavior by Hypocrites that know better but are so brazen that they spit on the constitution.


In 1944: 18-20 year olds stormed the beaches, parachuted behind enemy lines, charged into battles and almost certain death.

In 2018: 18-20 year olds need 'safe zones' on college campuses to protect their fragile emotions from the risk of encountering 'offensive' words - pathetic!

Climate Kids...just a bunch of 'snowflakes.'


The kids are all right.
From this case, to the activism of the Parkland survivors, and so on: I feel very good about this rising generation.


Thanks for sharing. I hope it will be helpful for too many people that are searching for this topic.
- driving directions

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