(NewsNation) — The U.S. Supreme Court will not hear requests from several major oil companies seeking to have lawsuits accusing them of worsening climate change moved from state to federal court, Reuters reported.
Supreme Court justices on Monday declined to hear five appeals from Exxon Mobil Corp., Suncor Energy Inc., Chevron Corp and other oil companies. The lawsuits were filed by the state of Rhode Island and municipalities or counties in California, Colorado, Hawaii and Maryland, according to Reuters. The oil companies hoped to have the lawsuits moved to federal court rather than be heard at the state level, which Reuters said tends to be more favorable to the complaining entities.
Theodore Boutrous, one of the attorneys representing Chevron, told the Wall Street Journal that climate change is an “issue of national and global magnitude” and belongs in federal court.
“These wasteful lawsuits in state courts will do nothing to advance global climate solutions, nothing to reduce emissions, and nothing to address climate-related impacts,” Boutrous told the WSJ.
Dr. Delta Merner, the lead scientist at the Science Hub for Climate Litigation at the Union of Concerned Scientists, called the court’s decision “a significant victory for climate justice.”
“ExxonMobil, Suncor, Chevron, Shell and other fossil fuel companies have known for decades that heat-trapping emissions from their operations and the use of their products drive climate change and its impacts, but they have continued to deceive the public and obstruct meaningful action,” Merner said.