Jul 09 2009
Professor May Comments on Climate Change Cases
With the headline, “Law Professor Says Climate Change Cases Will Be ‘Irresistible’ to U.S. Supreme Court,” the December 16, 2009 issue of BNA’s Daily Environment Reporter and the December 17, 2009 issue of BNA’s Toxic Torts Reporter cited Jim May’s comments on recent climate change cases during a December 15, 2009 teleconference sponsored by the American Bar Association entitled “The Political Question Doctrine, Climate Change, and the Meaning of Recent Climate Change Litigation”. Commenting on the recent decisions in Connecticut v. American Electric Power Co., Comer v. Murphy Oil, and Native Village of Kivalina v. ExxonMobil Corp., Professor May is quoted as saying that the political question doctrine has been used “sparingly” and is especially rare in environmental law. The articles also cite Professor May as predicting that Justice Kennedy ”will be the swing vote and will decide how the current court might handle global climate change cases in light of the political question doctrine.”
Professor May is also quoted extensively on this topic in a December 17, 2007 article on Greenwire.com entitled “Courts May Beat Congress, U.N. to Punch on Greenhouse Gases,” which was also picked up by NYTimes.com. The article leads off with this quotation:
“My prediction is that there will be more judicial action before there’s enacted federal legislation or international agreement. That’s a fair bet,” said James May, a law professor at Widener University in Delaware. “In the absence of federal legislation and an international accord, these cases are the leading beacons for remedying the effects of climate change.”
For coverage of the Environmental Law Center’s Launch in Wilmington and Harrisburg, visit http://law.widener.edu/NewsandEvents/Articles/2009/dehb102109envirocenterlaunch.aspx
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