Ninth Circuit Finds Public Nuisance Lawsuit Unavailable to Address Climate Change Impacts on Threatened Native Alaskan Village

Today, the Ninth Circuit issued an opinion affirming a federal district court decision to dismiss the lawsuit filed by the Native Alaskan Village of Kivalina that sought damages from oil and electric power companies whose greenhouse gas emissions have contributed to climate change.   Kivalina contended that the companies’ greenhouse gas emissions constituted a public …


Ninth Circuit Rules Against Indian Tribe’s Climate Change Suit

Not much of a surprise here; a Ninth Circuit panel “has ruled against the northwest Alaska village of Kivalina, which sued energy companies over claims that greenhouse emissions contributed to global warming that is threatening the community’s existence.”  The village brought a common-law public nuisance claim against the oil companies, but the panel held that …


Kivalina and the Courts: Justice for America’s First Climate Refugees?

It’s hard not to sympathize with the Native Alaskan inhabitants of the Village of Kivalina. The 400 residents of Kivalina, a thin peninsula of land in Alaska jutting into the Chuckchi Sea north of the Arctic Circle, have the dubious distinction of being among the first climate refugees in the U.S. Their town is literally …