The Corner

Re: Climate Nuisance Suit

As Iain noted last week, on Thursday a federal judge in New York dismissed the lawsuit brought by New York AG Elliott Spitzer and other state AGs against several utilities alleging that their continued emission of greenhouse gases constituted an actionable “nuisance” under common law. This is the second major court loss for state AGs in global warming lawsuits thus far this year, and a third case is still pending. The case is certain to be appealed. The legal rationale for dismissal will likely need to be refined a bit, nonetheless there’s a decent chance this ruling will be upheld — and the state AGs will be frustrated in their efforts to encourage judicial usurpation of matters best left in the hands of the elected branches of government.

Jonathan H. Adler — Jonathan H. Adler is the Johan Verhiej Memorial Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Business Law and Regulation at the Case Western Reserve University School of Law.

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