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State files appeal to Supreme Court in Held v. Montana case

 Montana State Capitol in Helena, Montana.
Shaylee Ragar
Montana State Capitol in Helena, Montana.

The state of Montana has filed its appeal to the Supreme Court over a youth-led climate case.

The appeal in the Held v. Montana case comes after a district court ruled in favor of the 16 youth plaintiffs last summer. The court found the state’s energy policies violated the plaintiff’s constitutional right to a healthy environment.

In January, the Montana Supreme Court ordered state regulators to consider climate change as part of their permitting decisions while the appeal plays out.

The state reiterated its argument that Montana is not singularly responsible for planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions, so Montana alone cannot remedy the young plaintiffs’ harm.

The appeal also argues Montana's Environmental Policy Act doesn’t give state agencies the power to address climate change or how it’s harming young people.

The plaintiffs now have until mid-March to submit a response to the state’s opening brief.

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Ellis Juhlin