Home | About | Donate

Coastal Annapolis Becomes 25th US Community to File Climate Suit That Aims to #MakePollutersPay

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/news/2021/02/23/coastal-annapolis-becomes-25th-us-community-file-climate-suit-aims-makepolluterspay


I wish them well in their ligations. I think, being the capitalist country that we still are, that the demise of big oil might best arise when other big companies or big consortiums of green energy take them on. A turf war.

near this article’s conclusion:

Previous climate liability lawsuits have been filed by the cities of Charleston, South Carolina, Hoboken, New Jersey, and Baltimore—Maryland’s most populous metropolis—as well as Connecticut, Delaware, and Rhode Island, the Ocean State.

Kathy Mulvey, accountability campaign director in the Climate and Energy Program at UCS, said the growing number of cases “shows that people and communities are fed up with having to shell out huge sums of money to address a crisis that these companies knowingly brought on.”

The “growing number of cases”? I know someone is trying to sound serious, but this is about as serious as Orangeman’s lawsuit flurry (signifying nothing much, as I recall). Can we please at least make a better attempt at looking serious with these gobs and gobs of lawsuits (anti-unemployment for attorneys) campaigns? For instance: some mention of whether any of the previous lawsuits in previous gobs ever went anywhere (other than into the maintenance of some lawyer’s Maserati, that is).

There are so many problems with the lawsuit strategy in general, it’s hard to get started. The lack of any positive results to point to from previous suits is only the gap created. The harm from it is the false impression that effective action is possible through grossly ill-conceived lawsuits like this. The idea that getting lots of stories out about lots of lawsuits filed stands the slightest chance of trending toward what the world needs. One: cessation of extraction, stopping the harm. Two: healing. Obviously step Two is hardly serious if we skip over step One. Like “Doctor, doctor! It hurts when I do this!”

There’s grotesque, permanent injury to the global ecosystem, continuing via the extraction of fossil fuels indefinitely. We can’t seem to stop ourselves. Now we’ve turned to suing ourselves. This looks so desperately, pathetically hysterical. Goddam it. Four percent of California burned down last year, including my brother’s home in Berry Creek. Let there be lawsuits. Right. As if this is some kind of personal injury case? Doesn’t that maybe seem like trivializing the worst threat humanity has ever faced?

Let’s get real, okay? As the polar vortex has gotten lost in Texas over the past week, Arctic sea-ice extent looks as if it might have peaked in mid-February this year – it’s plummeting now as the the Arctic warms, as Texas freezes. This is considerably more serious than a heart-attack, folks. I doubt ambulance-chasers can provide any useful assistance, with this little problem.


1 Like

The loss of your brother’s home is a tragedy that could have been prevented. So many people’s lives uprooted, so much heartbreak. What more proof do we need of our interdependence? I wish your brother and his family strength and the resources to begin again.


Thanks for your condolences. The loss is almost incomprehensible. They raised their kids up there, in the sublime Sierra foothills, before anyone suspected there might be a problem. I can remember falling asleep to incredible riches of milky starscape above, then waking to see jack-rabbits grazing and lazily loping through the yard like miniature antelope. You can’t ever bring the slightest little bit of that back, it’s all nowhere, now, except in old photographs and memories.

It’s not like losing your home, or even like the dark days of the Oakland hills fire, when neighborhoods were lost. The whole damn town of Berry Creek burned down, and the next couple of towns, as well. That’s how it goes now. Something like after an atomic bomb, without so much radiation. That’s why fossil fuel extraction has to stop now, and why futile legal feints make my blood boil.

A closer look at the NSIDC data shows a unique confluence of downturns in both Arctic and Antarctic ice extent, right now. This is a new chapter, with a bookmark for folks who can stand to watch the page turn:



In the absence of a properly configured carbon tax that keeps rising year after year, these lawsuits might be seen as a stopgap measure.

At the least - we’ll find out if the courts are still in denial.

That’s quite the drop in Arctic Sea Ice !

I don’t like the way the media and weather services are depicting ‘the Arctic Vortex’ heading deep south, into Gulf Coast Texas for example. Once a jet stream is ‘down there’ - it is no longer an Arctic Vortex in any way shape or form. A better visual depiction, for me at any rate, is that the Arctic Vortex has temporarily collapsed, allowing cold Arctic air, normally confined north of 66, to flood the southern US states.

The march north of the Intertropical Convergence Zone as the Equinox approaches - that seems to be the main determinant of the climate now. The cold spells and the warm spells, along with those massive and persistent north/south loops in the mid-latitude jet streams - they persist longer and longer - a possible indicator of an approaching change of state - a hysteresis - I think the chaos mathematicians call it.


Hi. I think the “demise” of big oil will be when and if they decide to monopolize the green energy field, with a crystal ball in one hand and a pocket full of dollars. As companies like GM go to all electric vehicles in 5 years, big oil will see the handwriting on the wall.

1 Like

Deep freeze events that shift the frost/freeze lines have major impacts on agricultural production. Crop zones must be totally rethought and often the available arable land ain’t. (Sentence made difficult to read on purpose for effect.) The energy infrastructure can (theoretically) be hardened, assuming that ample renewable energy is available. Food takes arable land and cooperative weather, which in times of climate change becomes a crap shoot beyond historical precedent. Whether it be the arctic vortex or monsoons in the Indian subcontinent, climate change is here, was foreseen, is an ongoing crime, and is The Greatest Story Ever Told. Take a load off Jesus.


Lawsuits and fines do little good unless they bankrupt the entity being sued.
And will they get financing to start over?
That’s why convicting trump was so necessary. To keep him from running for dogcatcher ever again.
Half the voting public is now so immoral they would vote for the candidate under indictment, or in court for trumpian crimes.