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A climate lawsuit won big in Montana. What will it mean for other cases?

Summary

The Held v. Montana case, a climate lawsuit brought by 16 young people against the state of Montana, has concluded with a Montana district court judge ruling that the state's energy permitting policies violated the plaintiffs' right to a healthy environment under Montana's state constitution. While the verdict did not mandate specific actions to reduce emissions, it establishes a significant legal precedent by directly connecting the state's energy policies to greenhouse gas emissions and the resulting harm to young people's well-being. Climate law experts believe this landmark decision could serve as a model for other climate litigation cases. The ruling highlights the potential for constitutional rights to a healthy environment to play a crucial role in climate-related lawsuits, especially in states that grant such rights in their constitutions.

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