Kids are suing the U.S. government over climate change


Note: We’re grateful to the team who produced Mic Dispatch. We’re proud of the show and the stories we’ve told. Thank you to our viewers for your support.

If adults won’t take action on climate change, young people will take matters into their own hands.

Twenty-one kids from across the country are suing the U.S. government for exacerbating climate change. They say that government policies are to blame for worsening wildfires, flooding and drought, and therefore violate their constitutional right to life, liberty and property.

The plaintiffs in the case, Juliana v. United States, are demanding that the government create a plan to phase out carbon emissions and the burning of fossil fuels.

The lawsuit was filed in a federal district court in Oregon in 2015, but both the Obama administration, and now the Trump administration, have tried to dismiss it. The government argues the plaintiffs cannot prove they’ve suffered real harm, and that the courts are the wrong place to tackle federal environmental and energy policies.

This episode of Mic Dispatch explores this lawsuit and examines whether it has any chance of succeeding. Watch the full episode above, and for more episodes of Mic Dispatch, see here.