Do Climate Change Nuisance Suits Belong In Federal Court?

By Carol Wood, Tracie Renfroe and Nate Bilhartz  (June 16, 2020, 5:56 PM EDT) -- The past three years have seen a wave of tort lawsuits seeking to hold fossil fuel companies liable for the societal costs of adapting to climate change.[1] Cities, counties and one state have asserted novel claims for public nuisance, along with other state law causes of action, arguing that fossil fuel companies should be required to pay for the costs of infrastructure projects undertaken to mitigate climate change's effects.

Whether the plaintiffs' claims are governed by federal law, and whether these lawsuits can be removed to, and litigated in, federal court, are important issues. In a pair of opinions issued May...

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