Frivolous climate change lawsuits could leave cities in ruin

Posted: August 1, 2018 by oldbrew in climate, Legal, opinion
Tags: ,

Whether it’s budget cuts or ‘ruin’, the financial consequences of using the courts to promote their so-called climate policies have so far not been as desired by the US city authorities concerned. As the writer points out: ‘The risk that municipal plaintiffs will have to pay defendants’ cost of the trial, plus a penalty, depends on whether courts find the lawsuits to be frivolous.’

As much as we hear nowadays about making America great again, it’s worth asking what made America great in the first place, writes Bob McClure in the Washington Times.

Whenever asked, I point to two often overlooked pieces of the puzzle: Our foundation of private property rights, and a strong rule of law to support them.

After all, if government can arbitrarily take your property, how can one build wealth or plan for the future? Unfortunately, this very thing is happening right now.

Trial lawyers and liberal activists are recruiting cities from California to New York to sign up for litigation against the oil and gas industry. They hope to find a court that will hold the industry solely responsible for “projected damages from climate change” — the key word here being “projected.”

We can debate climate change and what sorts of effects it may or may not have. But lured by promises of big payouts, the municipalities signing on to sue Big Oil are exposing their constituents to much more immediate potential costs that could force tax increases and local budget cuts for essential services such as fire and police departments.

Continued here.


  1. ivan says:

    I can’t help wondering how much influence the running out of other peoples money makes the city fathers even consider these cases. So far all the cities have been hard left controlled and such people always love using other peoples money to line their own pockets.

  2. Bitter@twisted says:

    Typical leftists. Trying to use the courts to push through deeply unpopular schemes that failed at the ballot box.
    These people are scum.

  3. JB says:

    Greatness, like glory and beauty, are all in the beholder’s eyes. Being a natural born citizen, I never thought of America’s political system nor its culture of “equality” as great. The Federal Constitution was dubbed an experiment and a copy of the British. Nothing innovative about that, and the “experiment” has proven to be an utter failure. It was condemned by many knowledgeable and sagacious persons before it got out of the chute. But like everything that happens politically, it was rammed down the throats of the populace as a good and advantageous thing, only to be shown immediately upon implementation that it was an artifice of certain powerful minority groups which ignored it anyway.

    If we truly honored property rights, there would no probate courts, no eminent domain, no disappearance of US Post Office boxes, and above all else, no Federal taxes. Legal plunder is the entire basis of government, especially democratic forms, and that’s all these city councils are doing.

  4. Jim says:

    I would beg to differ on only one point. A liberal generally tries to look at both sides of an issue, and goes with either side that falls with their reasoning. A conservative is generally dogmatic, their way or the highway people that say, accept the programming and follow the leader. And neither side is generally right.

  5. Phoenix44 says:

    Progressives really have lost the plot. These lawsuits rely on the idea there was a conspiracy, as you cannot be sued for doing something that is entirely legal, no matter what damage it might be causing to the environment (at best you could get them to stop doing it, but the oil companies aren’t even the ones burning the oil).

    The Progressives have actually convinced themselves that the oil companies “knew” about climate change and decided not to tell anybody. They have taken their own puerile prejudices – evil corporations – and turned them into bizarre lawsuits.

    It’s one thing to say a load of nonsense, quite another to believe it.

  6. oldbrew says:

    The California defeat may make some of them think twice. If they haven’t got any new arguments, they may at least look frivolous if they just parrot the California claims again.

  7. p.g.sharrow says:

    “Whenever asked, I point to two often overlooked pieces of the puzzle: Our foundation of private property rights, and a strong rule of law to support them.”

    The American Constitution enshrined the concept that, common citizens had the Right to acquire and utilize property. Every other governmental system only Allowed citizens the use of property.

    During the last 50 years Globalists have utilized the courts to subjugate this right to the whim of local bureaucrats and politicians. The Roberts Court decision that a local government can take your property and give it to another private party drove the final nail into this guarantee. Today in California you pay “rent” (taxes) on your property to the local government and may only make the use of it that they permit or may change at any time, Sometimes they permit No use at all!

    This has caused the sky rocking value of usable property, rampant homelessness. People can not obtain affordable housing because many usable homes are being “condemned” as being inadequate for Modern use and so sit empty awaiting mandatory up grades or razing to make room for expensive new construction. You must pay massive fees to do anything to fulfill mandated improvements, so older properties sit vacant, it is too expensive to use them….pg

  8. Curious George says:

    “Projected” is indeed a key word. It is a project how to make a lot of money cheaply.

  9. oldbrew says:

    They are pursuing the tobacco companies analogy, but it’s not getting them anywhere so far. Maybe the idea is that if they put it before enough judges, one will eventually be persuaded to buy their flaky arguments.

  10. Ian W says:

    “Trial lawyers and liberal activists are recruiting cities from California to New York to sign up for litigation against the oil and gas industry. ”

    So the response to the next identical lawsuit is to point out that it is the same trial lawyers and liberal activists that tried and failed in California. This is obviously a frivolous law suit as the same arguments will be made and the same successful rebuttals. Meanwhile the ‘trial lawyers and liberal activists’ are making money from the rube politicians in name-another-city-council. If costs are to be awarded against anyone it is these trial lawyer firms that seem to think they have ‘a nice little earner’ and can go from city to city inciting them to litigate.

  11. oldbrew says:

    This may have put the kibosh on the whole climate litigation craze…

    Date: 02/08/18

    An exhaustive investigative article in the New York Times Magazine said that Exxon was one of multiple entities that “knew” decades ago about the potential perils of climate change, the others being the federal government, the auto industry, trade groups for the electrical grid and the television-watching public.

    “Everybody knew,” said the article by Nathaniel Rich, who spent 18 months researching and writing the piece that took up the entire magazine.
    . . .
    “If all of humanity was informed of the dangers of climate change in the 1970s and agreed that something needed to be done, how can activists lay the blame for global inaction at the feet of the industry and political partisanship?”
    – – –
    Getting sued over climate change claims? Just wave the NYT mag under the judge’s nose 😉

    Everybody knows? Sounds like a cue…

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