Juliana v. United States
A group of young people, including Kelsey Cascadia Rose Julianna and an environmental group, filed a federal lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon challenging the failure of government to take action to combat climate change in the face of an existential threat to the survival of current and succeeding generations. After the district court denied summary judgment, Defendants filed an interlocutory appeal in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit challenging the denial. The Ninth Circuit reversed and instructed the district court to dismiss the case for lack of Article III standing, finding that it would be beyond the power of the court to provide any meaningful relief should the plaintiffs success in their claims. The Ninth Circuit noted that "the plaintiff's case must be made to the political branches or to the electorate at large, the latter of which can change the composition of the political branches through the ballot box." Ms. Julianna filed a petition for rehearing en banc.
Juvenile Law Center joined the Emory Child Rights Project, the Denver University Environmental Law Clinic and other children's rights advocates on an amicus brief filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in support of Ms. Julianna's petition for rehearing en banc. Amici emphasized the injustice of establishing that the only recourse for youth is through the ballot box and the political process from which they are excluded.