Global Warming Litigation – 3 Main Cases
Since 1947, the Doomsday clock has been used as a symbolic reference to measure the degree of nuclear threat. On January 27th of this year it was set to five minutes to midnight. It was advanced by two minutes on January 17, 2007 by experts assessing the dangers posed to civilization from catastrophic climate change.
Meanwhile the Bush administration continues to play down the threats of extreme weather and dramatic shifts in climate. Last May Law and Disorder aired speeches from the Catastrophic Climate Change Forum at Albany Law School including speakers such as Dr. James Hansen, director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies. Hansen cited hard evidence – building the case that global climate change is at a tipping point and emissions from power plants and vehicles are mainly to blame.
Of the main contributors to this one percent tipping point of greenhouse gases are utility companies, automobile emissions and housing stock. This one percent of man made emissions that can be regulated say attorneys involved in 3 major climate change cases.
- Attorneys General Complaint in State of Connecticut v. American Electric Power
- U.S. District Court opinion in State of Connecticut v. American Electric Power,(decided September 15, 2005)
- General information on climate change litigation
- Comprehensive reports on current efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions at state, federal, and international level
Guest – Eleanor Stein, Adjunct Professor of Law Albany Law School at Union University
Soul of Justice: Thelton Henderson’s American Journey
A film documentary that chronicles one man’s influence on the American judicial system. The first black attorney in the Civil Rights Division of the Kennedy Justice Department, Thelton Anderson was later appointed by President Jimmy Carter as one of the first African American federal judges in the United States. His decisions have been informed by a profound sense of fairness, distinguished also by his tenacity in seeing that they are enforced even in the face of great political opposition. Soul of Justice includes rare archival footage, and interviews with lawyers and a Supreme Court justice.
Guest – Abby Ginzberg, an award winning filmmaker producing films for the last 22 years. Her films focus on race, equality of opportunity and model programs for at-risk youth.
Soul of Justice – NYC screenings: Monday Feb 26, Columbia Law School 116th St. & Amsterdam Ave, 6pm, Rm 107
Tuesday Feb 27, NYU Law School, Tishman Auditorium in Vanderbilt Hall at 40 Washington Square. doors open at 5:30, film at 6pm
Law Students for Government Accountability
LSGA was created out of the Student Hurricane Network run by law students (with some assistance by various attorneys, experienced lobbyists, an international strategy consulting firm, and an international PR firm). Its purpose is 1) to continue to educate the public about the causes and costs of the hurricanes Katrina and Rita to the Gulf Coast region and the nation at large, 2) to obtain the support of the 110th Congress for a Statement of Principles to ensure that such a disaster never happens again on the Gulf Coast through providing its necessary rebuilding and renewal, or any American soil through a comprehensive federal catastrophe prevention and response plan, and 3) work in partnership and solidarity with the thousands of voices advocating for those directly harmed by this disaster to ensure that the legislation passed by Congress provides a clear and coherent plan to prevent this from ever happening again.
Right now, LSGA is working on recruiting 1000 law students to participate in a March 14 National Lobbying Day in DC, to get their representatives to sign the Statement of Principles, guaranteeing wetland restoration, Category 5 levee and flood prevention, improvement of the management of the Mississippi River that would facilitate the restoration of the land and ensure ecological and economic security, the full recovery of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast, and address the underlying issues of poverty and racism.
Guest – Andrew Doss – LSGA Board Member