Declaration of Support for Juliana v. United States

Green Newton has signed a declaration of support for Juliana v. United States

Declaration of Support
(See PDF version)

CO₂ levels in the atmosphere are the highest in human history, having exceeded 400 parts per million (ppm) for the first time in 1 million years. This human-made increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide levels has caused large-scale climate change, profoundly altering the planet on which we live. Climate change is causing ocean warming and acidification, and the warming of the Earth’s surface, leading to rising seas, more extreme weather events and flooding, heat waves and droughts, more intense and destructive wildfires, disrupted ecosystems and agriculture, more disease and other health threats, famine, conflict, and loss of human life.

The scientific prescription for avoiding the worst effects of climate change mandates returning atmospheric levels of CO₂ to below 350 ppm by the year 2100, requiring immediate and swift reductions in CO₂ emissions globally and an overall reduction to almost zero by 2050, in addition to protecting soils and forests to sequester more carbon. The most critical transformations must happen over the next decade. Any delay will make it more difficult or impossible to meet a safe target; thus, urgent and substantial reductions in CO₂ emissions are critical.

In the landmark constitutional climate case known as Juliana v. United States, 21 American youth filed a lawsuit against the United States government for taking actions that cause climate disruption in violation of the youths’ and future generations’ constitutional rights to life, liberty and property, and equal protection under the law, and for violating its duty under the Public Trust Doctrine by failing to protect the atmosphere for all generations.

If the Juliana youth plaintiffs are successful in their case, the federal government will be ordered to create and implement a science-based national Climate Recovery Plan designed to phase out the United States’ fossil fuel energy system and emissions and draw down excess atmospheric CO₂ in line with the 350 ppm by 2100 prescription.

Support from organizations, congregations, schools, municipalities and businesses from across the United States is critically needed as we envision a society free of fossil fuels and the national security and public health and safety impacts of climate change.

THEREFORE, Green Newton declares support for the 21 Juliana v. U.S. youth plaintiffs, the fundamental constitutional rights they seek to protect, and the creation and implementation of a science-based national Climate Recovery Plan that would allow a just transition away from a fossil fuel-based energy system.

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