For Immediate Release

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Members of Congress to Introduce Resolution Supporting Juliana Climate Case Plaintiffs and Other Youths

WASHINGTON - Members of the U.S. Congress will introduce the Children’s Fundamental Rights and Climate Recovery Resolution on Wednesday, Sept. 23, from noon to 12:45 p.m. EDT. Youth plaintiffs behind the landmark constitutional climate lawsuit Juliana v. United Stateswill join them for an online press conference.

Please register on Zoom here: www.bit.ly/StandwithJuliana. You are invited to submit questions for participating members of Congress, youth plaintiffs and their attorneys via the registration page.

Attendees will include Sen. Jeff Merkley of Oregon and Representatives Jan Schakowsky (Illinois 9th congressional district), Pramila Jayapal (Washington 7th congressional district) and Bobby Rush (Illinois 1st congressional district) along with Juliana v. United States youth plaintiffs including Levi Draheim, Vic Barrett, Isaac Vergun and Avery M.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

In September 2019 the Juliana v. United States youth plaintiffs and young American climate leaders, joined by Greta Thunberg, descended on Washington to tell our nation’s leaders to act on climate. On the one-year anniversary of that historic event, young people from across the country will come together once more during the week of the resolution’s introduction for virtual lobby days hosted by Our Children’s Trust, 350.org and the National Children’s Campaign

The Children’s Fundamental Rights and Climate Recovery Resolution recognizes that the current climate crisis disproportionately affects the health, economic opportunity, and fundamental rights of children, and demands that the United States develop a national, science-based, and just climate recovery plan to meet necessary emissions reduction targets. Legislators will call upon their colleagues to support youth’s fundamental rights to life, liberty, and property – which includes a climate system capable of sustaining human life – and science-based targets to uphold these rights. The resolution also supports the principles underpinning Juliana v. United States, the constitutional climate lawsuit against the executive branch of the federal government for creating a national energy system that causes climate change. 

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Learn more about the  21 Juliana plaintiffs and the resolution and its endorsers

Juliana v. United States is not about the government’s failure to act on climate. Instead, the plaintiffs assert that the U.S. government, through its actions in creating a national energy system that causes climate change, is depriving them of their constitutional rights to life, liberty, and property, and has failed to protect essential public trust resources.

The case is one of many related legal actions brought by youth in several states and countries, all supported by Our Children’s Trust, and all seeking science-based action by governments to stabilize the climate system.

Our Children’s Trust is a nonprofit public interest law firm that provides strategic, campaign-based legal services to youth from diverse backgrounds to secure their legal rights to a safe climate. We work to protect the Earth’s climate system for present and future generations by representing young people in global legal efforts to secure their binding and enforceable legal rights to a healthy atmosphere and stable climate, based on the best available science. We support our youth clients and amplify their voices before the third branch of government in a highly strategic legal campaign that includes targeted media, education, and public engagement work to support the youths’ legal actions. Our legal work – guided by constitutional, public trust, human rights laws and the laws of nature – aims to ensure systemic and science-based climate recovery planning and remedies at federal, state, and global levels. www.ourchildrenstrust.org/

Earth Guardians, an organizational plaintiff in the Juliana case, is a Colorado-based nonprofit organization with youth chapters on five continents, and multiple groups in the United States with thousands of members working together to protect the Earth, the water, the air, and the atmosphere, creating healthy sustainable communities globally. We inspire and empower young leaders, families, schools, organizations, cities, and government officials to make positive change locally, nationally, and globally to address the critical state of the Earth.www.earthguardians.org

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350 is the red line for human beings, the most important number on the planet. The most recent science tells us that unless we can reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to 350 parts per million, we will cause huge and irreversible damage to the earth. But solutions exist. All around the world, a movement is building to take on the climate crisis, to get humanity out of the danger zone and below 350. This movement is massive, it is diverse, and it is visionary. We are activists, scholars, and scientists. We are leaders in our businesses, our churches, our governments, and our schools. We are clean energy advocates, forward-thinking politicians, and fearless revolutionaries. And we are united around the world, driven to make our planet livable for all who come after us.

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