Courts

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9 Dem lawmakers urge DOJ to free Steven Donziger, whose Chevron-backed prosecution is a gross miscarriage of justice

Nine U.S. House Democrats on Monday urged the Justice Department to “take immediate action” to secure the release of Steven Donziger, a human rights attorney who helped thousands of Ecuadorians win a multibillion-dollar lawsuit against oil giant Chevron and is now incarcerated on a contempt of court charge that experts say is retaliatory—and which followed two years of pre-trial house arrest, a […]

December 1st

PA pipeline company charged with 48 counts, faces major penalties

The Pennsylvania attorney general announced 48 criminal charges against Energy Transfer over the construction of the Mariner East 2 pipeline on Tuesday. The charges cover multiple drilling fluid leaks as well as the use of unapproved chemical additives and reporting failures. By Nathan Kauffman Nexus Media News The controversial pipeline was intended to transport fracked […]

October 8th

Stephen Donziger, the lawyer who beat Chevron, gets 6 months in jail from Chevron’s judge

Environmental justice advocates and other progressives on Friday condemned a federal judge’s decision Friday to sentence human rights lawyer Steven Donziger to six months in prison—following more than two years of house arrest related to a lawsuit he filed decades ago against oil giant Chevron. By Julia Conley Common Dreams The sentence, delivered by U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska in New York City, represents “an […]

October 2nd

Resounding climate win as judge blocks new Alaska oil drilling and pipele project

A federal judge on Wednesday tossed out construction permits for a sprawling, multibillion-dollar Alaska oil drilling project that the Trump administration approved and the Biden Interior Department defended in court earlier this year, infuriating Indigenous groups, climate advocates, and scientists. By Jake Johnson Common Dreams  In a 110-page decision (pdf), Judge Sharon Gleason of the U.S. District Court for […]

August 19th

Steven Donziger (who helped Amazon natives beat Chevron in court) CONVICTED by Chevron-owned court in NY

Human rights lawyer Steven Donziger said Monday that he is a victim of an “obvious travesty of justice” and vowed to appeal after a judge found him guilty on six counts of criminal contempt of court. By Jake Johnson Common Dreams The ruling by U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska marks the latest development in a case that stems […]

July 27th

Environmental Justice: Pipeline activist sentenced to 8 years (While Big Oil crimes go unpunished)

Environmentalists in recent days expressed outrage over the eight-year prison sentence handed to Jessica Reznicek—a nonviolent water protector who pleaded guilty to damaging equipment at the Dakota Access Pipeline in Iowa—while calling the fossil fuel companies who knowingly caused the climate emergency the real criminals who should be held to account.   By Brett Wilkins Common […]

July 7th

KXL pipeline is dead, so company is suing US for $15 billion

In a move that progressives described as unsurprising yet outrageous, TC Energy Corporation, the Canadian company behind the now-defunct Keystone XL pipeline, is seeking more than $15 billion in compensation from the United States government, which it has accused of violating free trade obligations by blocking further development of the tar sands oil project. By Kenny […]

July 7th

Trump-appointed judge blocks Biden from pausing new oil drilling leases

A Trump-appointed federal judge on Tuesday blocked the Biden administration from enforcing a temporary pause on new leases for oil and gas drilling on public lands and waters, a decision the Interior Department said it “will comply with” amid warnings about the order’s potentially destructive climate impact. By Jake Johnson Common Dreams “The judge’s order turns a blind […]

June 17th

A court ruling against Shell and votes against Exxon and Chevron add pressure, but it’s the market that will drive oil giants to change

From news reports, it might sound like the fossil fuel industry is on the defensive after a landmark court ruling and two shareholder votes challenging the industry’s resistance to curbing its greenhouse gas emissions. But how much power do decisions like these really carry when it comes to pressuring the industry to change? As an […]

June 16th

Four seismic climate wins show big oil, gas and coal are running out of places to hide

Three global fossil fuel giants have just suffered embarrassing rebukes over their inadequate action on climate change. Collectively, the developments show how courts, and frustrated investors, are increasingly willing to force companies to reduce their carbon dioxide pollution quickly. By Jacqueline Peel, The University of Melbourne; Ben Neville, The University of Melbourne, and Rebekkah Markey-Towler, […]

Hearing date scheduled for California state water project’s secret “Monterey Amendments” cases

The 3rd District Court of Appeals will hear arguments for two California Water Impact Network (C-WIN) appeals on July 19, 2021A combined hearing has been set for the “Monterey Plus” and “Kern Water Bank” appeals, aka Central Delta Water Agency v. DWR and Center for Food Safety v. DWR, aka “Central Delta I” and “Central Delta II,” according to […]

May 30th

Could EPA ban glyphosphate? Monsanto’s parent Bayer mulls pulling Roundup

After a federal judge rejected a $2 billion class-action proposal from Bayer to avert future lawsuits alleging its popular Roundup herbicide causes cancer, the pharmaceutical and chemical giant announced Thursday that it would consider ending sales of the glyphosate-based weedkiller for residential use in the United States. By Brett Wilkins Common Dreams In a statement, […]

May 28th

Remembering Christopher D. Stone, an early advocate of legal rights for nature

In 2006, when I was advising a borough council member in Tamaqua, Pennsylvania about options for the municipality to oppose plans to dump PCB-laden river dredge—mixed with mercury-rich coal fly ash— into the local Springdale open pit mine, I mentioned an idea raised by Christopher Stone. Back in 1972, Stone published a paper in the […]

Reckoning for Roundup rolls on: Ninth Circuit Court upholds verdict in case against Monsanto

“The reckoning for Roundup rolls on.” So said George Kimbrell, legal director of the Center for Food Safety, on Friday after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit in San Francisco affirmed a lower court ruling against Monsanto (since acquired by Bayer) which found the chemical giant responsible for the cancer suffered by […]

May 15th

Supporters rally for Steven Donziger as Chevron’s trial aimed at silencing critics begins

Human rights defenders spoke at a rally in New York City Monday ahead of what they called a “show trial” for attorney Steven Donziger, who was held in contempt of court in 2019 by a prosecutor with ties to the fossil fuel industry. Donziger won (pdf) a historic $9.5 billion judgment against oil giant Chevron in 2013 over the […]

May 11th