Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Attorney General Ellison joins other AGs in asking Justice Department to reverse Trump positions on climate deception cases


The movement to hold fossil fuel companies accountable for the damage they knowingly caused picked up steam this week when attorneys general from five states, including Minnesota, sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland asking him to withdraw legal briefs filed in support of fossil fuel companies in litigation during the Trump administration. The state attorneys general argue the previous administration’s briefs contradict President Biden’s position on climate change. According to an article from Reuters, the letter states:

“Those positions are not only misplaced -- as almost all the courts to consider them have ruled to date -- but also directly contravene President Biden’s 2020 pledge to ‘strategically support ongoing plaintiff-driven climate litigation against polluters.’ ”

And that the Trump administrations positions undermined:

“[Their] efforts to hold fossil fuel companies accountable for harms caused in our states -- to our consumers, our investors, our infrastructure, our real property, and our natural resources.”

Minnesota is one of several states suing fossil fuel companies for damages stemming from these companies decades of lying about the harm their product caused. Minnesotans are paying billions of dollars in climate-related costs, and the lawsuit seeks justice for the costs incurred by the oil companies’ deceptive practices. For instance in a House Capital Investment hearing earlier this year it was remarked that homeowner insurance rates have increased 366% between 1998 and 2015 in Minnesota, increasing from $368 to $1,348 per year. This rate increase was driven by risks that are, in large part, due to climate change.

In an interview with KUMD radio this week, MN350 representative Ella Johnson told the station she was optimistic of the lawsuit’s success despite the deep pockets and political connections of the oil industry, likening it to the fight against Big Tobacco in the 1990s:

“This lawsuit has a really good chance of success despite all of Big Oil’s money. . . . What we can look to is the major victory over Big Tobacco in the 1990’s. Big Tobacco, just like Big Oil, was lying to the public for decades and doing it in a way that broke a bunch of laws and in a way that garnered them a lot of ill-gotten profits.”

For the past year MN350 has been raising awareness about the Big Deception perpetrated upon Minnesotans by Big Oil and educating them on the damages caused by these falsehoods. CAMPAIGN LANDING PAGE


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