President Donald Trump’s administration asked the U.S. Supreme Court stop a novel and sweeping lawsuit pressed by children and teenagers seeking to force the federal government to take steps against climate change.
Thursday’s emergency filing aims to head off a trial that’s set to start Oct. 29 in federal court in Oregon. It’s the administration’s second attempt to have the nation’s highest court intervene in the case.
Although the Supreme Court rejected the first request in July as premature, the justices hinted at skepticism about the lawsuit, saying its breadth was “striking.” Since that order was issued, the Senate has confirmed Justice Brett Kavanaugh to succeed the retired Justice Anthony Kennedy.
The group of mostly teenagers says U.S. government policies have exacerbated global warming in violation of their constitutional rights and those of future generations. They want the government to put in place a plan to phase out carbon emissions and stabilize the Earth’s climate. A federal judge in Eugene, Oregon, on Monday said the case could proceed to trial, though she dismissed Trump as a defendant.
The Trump team inherited the case from the Obama administration, which had similarly tried to have it thrown out.