Baltimore’s top lawyer filed a lawsuit Friday against more than two dozen oil and gas companies that do business in the city, seeking to hold them financially responsible for their contributions to global climate change.
City Solicitor Andre M. Davis said the city will argue the companies violated state laws, including a consumer protection statute, by concealing and disputing links between fossil fuel emissions and climate change.
“The companies knew of the harm decades ago,” the former federal judge said. “If it had been disclosed, the problem of climate change could have been mitigated significantly. That’s our claim.”
The lawsuit, filed in Baltimore Circuit Court, follows more than a dozen similar complaints filed by governments around the country — some of which judges have quickly tossed.
Just Thursday, a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit New York City officials filed against oil companies, echoing a 2011 Supreme Court ruling that called climate change “an undertaking for the political branches” of government.