Washington

In Wake of WA Climate Rule Withdrawal, Youth Petitioners Return to Court (Press Release 4/6/16)

Ordered to Act With Urgency, Ecology Responds With More Delays

Late yesterday, the youth petitioners in a precedent-setting case over climate disruption in Washington state asked the court to step in yet again after the state Department of Ecology withdrew its proposed rule to reduce carbon emissions. By withdrawing the proposed rule, Ecology demonstrated it is unable or unwilling to fulfill its legal responsibilities absent a court order directing it to do so in a timely manner.  

Judge Rules Feds Improperly Refused to Protect Wolverines (Press Release 4/4/16)

Orders Reconsideration of Safeguards for Species Imperiled by Climate Change

Today, the federal district court for Montana rejected a decision by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) to deny protections for wolverines in the contiguous U.S. The court ruled the Service improperly ignored science and violated the Endangered Species Act. A broad coalition of conservation organizations challenged the Service’s refusal to protect imperiled wolverines by listing them under the ESA.

Spokane River advocates petition state to increase summertime water flow (Press Release 3/1/16)

Water is needed for river health, fish, recreational boaters, and scenic beauty

On Monday, advocates for the Spokane River petitioned the Washington Department of Ecology to increase its flow rule for the popular and heavily used Spokane River. The Spokane River is a beloved urban river that flows through the second largest city in Washington State, including spectacular waterfalls and a deep gorge. Conservationists seek a minimum summertime flow of 1,800–2,800 cubic feet per second to support fisheries and recreation, and protect higher flows for recreation when available.

State of Washington Delays Action on Climate Change – Again (Press Release 3/2/16)

3/02/2016
Department of Ecology Abandons Proposed Greenhouse Gas Rule

On Friday, Feb. 26, the Washington Department of Ecology withdrew its proposed rule to reduce carbon emissions in the state. The rule was supposed to remedy a lawsuit brought by eight youth petitioners against the state of Washington, in which Judge Hollis R. Hill declared "[the youths’] very survival depends upon the will of their elders to act now, decisively and unequivocally, to stem the tide of global warming…before doing so becomes first too costly and then too late."

Groups file suit to protect threatened salmon and trout in the Puyallup River (Press Release 1/12/16)

1/12/2016

A coalition of conservation groups filed suit today to protect Puget Sound Chinook salmon, steelhead and bull trout – all threatened with extinction – from being killed by the Electron hydroelectric project on the Puyallup River.

"Wild salmon and steelhead are part of who we are in the Pacific Northwest, and protecting this habitat is critical to their recovery. This is a clear-cut case of illegal 'take' of three species threatened with extinction," said Andrea Rodgers, attorney with the Western Environmental Law Center. 

Conservationists deal blow to Wildlife Services in landmark WA wolf case (Press Release 12/21/15)

Court rejects indiscriminate wolf killing

In response to a challenge brought by a coalition of conservation organizations, a federal court rejected plans to escalate cruel wolf killing in Washington state by the secretive federal program dubbed "Wildlife Services." Federal District Judge Robert Bryan held that Wildlife Services should have prepared a more in-depth environmental analysis of the impacts of its proposed wolf killing activities, finding the program’s cursory environmental assessment faulty because the proposed actions would have significant cumulative impacts that are highly controversial and highly uncertai

In Advance of Paris Climate Talks, Washington Court Recognizes Constitutional and Public Trust Rights and Announces Agency’s Legal Duty to Protect Atmosphere for Present and Future Generations (Press Release 11/20/15)

“[I]f ever there were a time to recognize through action this right to preservation of a healthful and pleasant atmosphere, the time is now”

Late last night, King County Superior Court Judge Hollis R. Hill issued a groundbreaking ruling in the unprecedented case of eight youth petitioners who requested that the Washington Department of Ecology write a carbon emissions rule that protects the atmosphere for their generation and those to come.

Tipsheet Timeline: Washington Youth Climate Case (Press Release 11/19/15)

11/19/2015

Soon, King County Superior Court Judge Hollis Hill will issue a ruling in the unprecedented case of seven youth petitioners requesting the Washington Department of Ecology to write a carbon emissions rule that protects the atmosphere for their generation and those to come. The case has an interesting and meaningful history, which is important to understand in anticipation of the ruling. Please see the following quick reference guide to the case so far:

In Front of Packed Courtroom, Young Petitioners Ask Judge to Uphold Their Rights to a Safe Environment (Press Release 11/3/15)

11/03/2015

Today, young Washington citizens sat in a packed King County courtroom and watched as their attorney, Andrea Rodgers gave a stunning and impassioned argument to the court as she fought for her clients’ right to a healthy environment and safe climate. Judge Hollis Hill heard oral argument in the important case brought by seven young petitioners to address Washington Department of Ecology’s (Ecology) persistent refusal to set science-based carbon pollution limits.

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