Monday January 22nd… Dear Diary. The main purpose of this ongoing post will be to track United States extreme or record temperatures related to climate change. I’ll refer to extreme temperatures as ETs (not extraterrestrials)😊. Here is today’s climate change related topic:
Suing the ****(Carb)😉 Out of Oil Companies
I’ll let you in on a little secret. I get most of my ideas for daily posts from emails from Inside Climate News. It’s crazy how many articles come out on different climate related subjects daily as summarized by ICN newsletters, so I have to pick and choose the most important topic I’ll expound upon. Not so long ago around the year 2005 I saw maybe one news item a day or even one a week. My have people joined in on the fight to save civilization from the ravages of carbon pollution, and that’s a very good thing…the more voices the better.
Society since man crawled out of caves punishes “evildoers,” and that’s what I am seeing more of daily as far as the climate goes. Some organizations are “slapped around” like children to modify behavior. Today’s topic is all about punishment but not abuse. I’m seeing more Inside Climate News items involving litigation, or suing as a method to reign in carbon pollution and punish those who are greedily profiting from fossil fuels. Here is a recent article involving Exxon, for example: https://insideclimatenews.org/news/09012018/exxon-california-coastal-cities-climate-change-damages-lawsuit-texas-court
When one threatens to sue the **** out of someone they usually take notice in one heartbeat. Well, I’m using carb, short for carbon, as my four letter word for today’s essay. If you hit someone in the wallet, they aren’t likely to commit the same crime, so too with any organization, be it government or corporation. In this day and age a carbon tax may be one way to wean society off fossil fuels. Another just so happens to be from the power of the court. Here is a quote from another article:
“Where governments are facing threats from climate change that endanger their residents and may cost billions of public dollars to address, it follows that some are actively seeking to investigate or take action against those fossil fuel companies, like Exxon, that are widely recognized to be responsible for a major share of the world’s carbon dioxide pollution,” the lawyers wrote.
Healey and New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman have been pursuing investigations for more than two years into how much of what Exxon knew about climate change risks was disclosed to investors and consumers. The oil giant has been fighting in federal court to block those investigations since June 2016.
Our legislature has the power to wield the ax of a carbon tax, if only they will. The courts can make oil and coal companies pay for carbon pollution, but there is pushback. Lawyers from powerful Exxon can countersue thereby delaying any judges decision. Nevertheless, lawsuits even if not initially successful, can focus the press on the climate issue. Courts can also keep carbon in the ground. Speaking of coal: https://www.sltrib.com/news/2018/01/20/how-the-future-of-utahs-coal-industry-rests-with-a-federal-judge-in-san-francisco/
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not trying to paint too rosy of a picture suggesting that litigating and the courts will save humanities’ butts from climate change. There is great power in the deep pockets of the fossil fuel industry, which might lead to lawsuit rulings not going the way of environmentalists, and even corruption in all branches of government. Certainly this may be the case as long as the Trump administration is in power.
There are rays of hope, though, and justice will eventually prevail in the long run. Perhaps the carb will be sued out of most energy companies and government prodding the transition to green energy. Today’s kids are setting an example:
Fraser MacLeod @FraserMacLeod5
I’ll add reports of ETs should I see them this evening.
The Climate Guy