Energy Companies Ask SCOTUS to Take Up Oakland, San Francisco’s Climate Cases

Similar to petitions filed by energy producers in climate change lawsuits brought by Boulder, San Mateo County, Baltimore and Rhode Island, the companies are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to address the question of jurisdiction, this time challenging an appellate court decision that reviewed Oakland and San Francisco’s cases. In addition to requesting the high court’s guidance on two technical matters, the companies stressed the significant implications of the cases to the justices:

“Before state courts across the nation set about deciding whether worldwide fossil-fuel production is unlawful—and thus whether a vital sector of the economy must be shuttered or remade—this Court should first decide whether these cases are in the right forum and governed by the right law.”

The petition, which was filed in early January but only docketed last week, requests review of a decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit that brought Oakland and San Francisco’s climate lawsuits against energy producers back to life in May 2020. It marks the latest petition brought by the companies contesting appellate court rulings over the last year; the Supreme Court heard oral argument in Baltimore’s own climate change case – the most advanced appeal – in mid-January.

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