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ICYMI: RealClear Energy Op-Ed by MAP’s Phil Goldberg – “SCOTUS Should Review Climate Cases to Stop the Gaming of an Outdated Legal Doctrine”

RealClear Energy recently published an op-ed by Phil Goldberg, special counsel to the Manufacturers’ Accountability Project. The Supreme Court is considering whether to hear cases regarding the proper jurisdiction for climate lawsuits—federal or state court. Goldberg’s op-ed details the history of this litigation campaign; he noted previous administrations’ positions and past federal court decisions substantiating the case for Supreme Court review and ultimately federal jurisdiction. His op-ed argues multistate disputes “over a consequential legal matter is the exact type of case the Supreme Court should review.”

Here are some of the key passages from the op-ed:

  • “The U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to decide, as early as April 21, whether to review lawsuits that are trying to remake America’s climate policy through litigation. The precise legal question is procedural – whether lawsuits seeking to make energy producers liable for climate change should be heard in federal or state courts – but the litigation is stirring a national debate.”
  • “There is no doubt that climate change is a critical issue and must be addressed. However, by going to the courts to impose their policies … they are trying to bypass the checks and balances of the legislative and regulatory processes.”
  • “Now, groups are desperately trying to keep their cases out of federal court. To do that, they package their lawsuits to allege only state law violations and filed them in state courts.”
  • “Judge David Stras, a federal appellate judge in the Eight Circuit, underscore their dilemma… He said it is up to the Supreme Court to update the removal rules so that the state cannot ‘artfully plead [] around them.’”
  • The federal government – under both Obama and Trump – saw these issues as legislative and federal issues. But the Biden administration, saying it ‘reexamined its position’ because of the ‘change in Administration,’ filed a brief in support of state jurisdiction.”
  • Meaningful action requires leadership and innovation so we can produce and use energy in ways that are affordable for people and sustainable for the planet. “The manufacturing community has invested heavily in these efforts, making manufacturing cleaner and more sustainable than ever. These are the types of solutions that policymakers should be advancing, and this litigation does none of that.”

You can read the entire RealClear Energy Op-Ed here.