Republican state AGs were in the majority…until this months election, when the majority flipped, with the most climate-denying AGs (in Michigan, Colorado, Wisconsin and Nevada) losing their jobs to Dems who ran on strong environmental platforms.
The outgoing climate-deniers pioneered a strategy of coordinated lawsuits and legal action (such as amicus briefs) to hold back action on climate and liability for fossil-fuel companies.
Now that Dems hold those offices, they could deploy the same tactics to grind the climate-wrecking looters' plans to a halt — for example, Michigan's new Democratic AG Dana Nessel has vowed to shut down the Enbridge pipeline that carries Canada's planet-destroying, filthy tar-sands oil to US markets.
In addition to the New York suit, which relies on a 1921 anti-fraud act aimed at curbing Wall Street excesses, and a suit by Rhode Island, which uses its anti-nuisance laws to hold 14 oil and gas companies liable for pollution, Massachusetts is using consumer protection laws to argue that the industry's failure to alert the public to the long-term risks of its products amounted to false and unfair advertising.
"One thing that's really interesting in working with Democratic attorneys general across the country is that every office is a little bit different in how it's structured, what powers they've been given, what their budgets are, what sort of authority they have," Ulmer said. "When it comes to issue-specific questions, it truly is going to depend on the state.
"But I can tell you a number of these candidates have talked about the importance of climate change, protecting the environment, protecting natural resources, making sure that the citizens of their states have clean water and really clean air and protecting the future during their campaigns. We know that's something they're going to continue…once they're fully transitioned into office."
Legal Blue Wave? New Democratic AGs Could Change the Face of Climate Fight
[Seamus McGraw/Climate Liability News]
(via Naked Capitalism)
(Image: Shootthedevgru, CC-BY-SA)