March 13, 2020
Public health experts, law professors and green groups are supporting a group of children's effort to have the Ninth Circuit review a panel's decision to sink their lawsuit claiming the federal government is endangering their futures by not acting to curb climate change. Several health groups, including the American Lung Association and American Pediatric Society, and a slew of doctors, told the Ninth Circuit in an amicus brief on Thursday that the court should grant the children's en banc rehearing request because the case could help force the government to change its policies and make the greenhouse gas emissions reductions that are necessary to avoid future climate change damage. ... The public health experts are represented by Wendy B. Jacobs and Shaun A. Goho of the Emmett Environmental Law & Policy Clinic at Harvard Law School.
The kids’ climate lawsuit faces a critical inflection point: A trio of federal appellate court judges could breathe new life into the case or kill it altogether. The lawsuit—brought in 2015 by 21 youth plaintiffs ranging in age from 10 to 21—has already faced a yearslong winding road. The June 4 oral arguments mark the second time that judges on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit will consider whether to halt the case before trial. The Supreme Court has twice weighed in, the last time just 10 days before a trial was slated to begin. The case, Juliana v. United States, tackles a consequential issue, climate change, by asking novel questions involving big legal dogmas—the Constitution and the public trust doctrine—with potentially significant consequences. If the kids are successful, it could force the government to develop a comprehensive plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across multiple sectors of the economy...“I think the only way they lose” on standing “is if the court basically concludes that no one ever has standing to bring cases about climate change,” said Shaun Goho, deputy director and senior staff attorney at Harvard Law School’s Emmett Environmental Law & Policy Clinic. Goho helped write an amicus brief with a group of public health professionals backing the plaintiffs.
June 4, 2019
The 21 children and young adults suing the federal government over climate change argue that they and their generation are already suffering the consequences of climate change, from worsening allergies and asthma to the health risks and stress that come with hurricanes, wildfires and sea level rise threatening their homes. As their case heads back to court this week, some of the heaviest hitters in the public health arena—including 15 major health organization and two former U.S. surgeons general—are publicly backing them up..."There's a really robust body of scientific literature that supports each of these different kinds of health impacts that are already being observed and are projected to get worse and worse," said Shaun Goho, deputy director of the Emmett Environmental Law & Policy Clinic at Harvard Law School and one of the attorneys who filed the amicus brief."The Juliana generation is going to feel and suffer from those impacts in a way that's really different and more extreme than what any previous generation has felt," Goho said.
November 18, 2016
In a recent conversation at HLS with Dean Martha Minow, Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland and U.N. special envoy on El Niño and climate change, told the story of how she came to be an “Angry Granny” on the topic of climate change, starting with her discussions with people in the most deeply affected communities.