Exxon Mobil vs CLF

by John McClaughry

Here’s the latest on the green campaign to punish ExxonMobil, for not having been a champion of green climate change solutions for the past thirty years. A bunch of  environmental activist groups, led by the Conservation Law Foundation (CLF), sued ExxonMobil for allegedly failing to sufficiently prepare a facility in Everett, Massachusetts, for the effects of climate change, including sea-level rise and more frequent and severe storms.

Well, hey, it’s Exxon Mobil’s facility, but that doesn’t deter enviro groups from suing anybody they want to cripple or extort.

On September 12 U.S. District Court Judge Mark Wolf partially granted ExxonMobil’s motion to dismiss CLF’s case, ruling that CLF was unnecessarily injecting climate change into its complaint, to the detriment of its own argument. Wolf says the case is about whether ExxonMobil violated the terms of a Clean Water Act permit from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, ordering CLF to refile its complaint with all references to climate change removed.

Wolf’s order made it clear for CLF’s claims to move forward, the organization needed to show ExxonMobil had either caused harm to the plaintiffs,  or that harm was “imminent,” and references to the projected effects of climate change by 2050 or 2100 wouldn’t qualify as such. If the plaintiffs were concerned about the effects of climate change on the facility in 2050, Wolf said, “they should refile their case in 2045.”

All I can say is, Hurray for Judge Wolf.

- John McClaughry is vice-president of the Ethan Allen Institute

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

John McClaughry October 8, 2017 at 10:54 pm

The irony is that ExxonMobil recently seemed to endorse a carbon tax, in what will be a vain effort to appease the climate change attack dogs.


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