SCOTUS asks Biden administration for opinion on Honolulu's lawsuit against gas and oil companies

 June 11, 2024

As Democrat-controlled cities and states continue to push the climate change agenda and target those they believe are responsible for furthering it, several major cases are making their way to the U.S. Supreme Court.

One such case, which involves deep blue Honolulu, Hawaii's lawsuits against several oil and gas industries regarding their alleged roles in climate change, sparked an interesting request.

According to The Hill, the U.S. Supreme Court has reached out to the Biden administration for its thoughts on the case.

On Monday, the high court wrote, "The Solicitor General is invited to file a brief in these cases expressing the views of the United States."

The Hill noted:

The Hawaii capital first sued several major fossil fuel companies in 2020, alleging they had created a public nuisance with their contributions to climate change and failing to warn the public about how their products would affect the environment.

The lawsuits received a green light from the state's top court, which wrote at the time that the defendants named "knew about the dangers of using their fossil fuel products, failed to warn consumers about those known dangers, and engaged in a sophisticated disinformation campaign to increase fossil fuel consumption, all of which exacerbated the impacts of climate change in Honolulu."

The defendants quickly escalated the issue to the U.S. Supreme Court.

However, now it's unclear whether or not the high court will take up the case, as the request for the Biden administration's response will delay that decision for an indefinite period.

While several blue states and cities have filed similar lawsuits in their continued attack on big oil and gas companies, the Honolulu case is, by far, the furthest along in the battle.

Undoubtedly, the Supreme Court's decision on the matter will have massive implications one way or another.

While most of the defendants and the city of Honolulu declined to respond to The Hill for comment, Ted Boutrous, counsel for Chevron Corp. issued a statement on the most recent development.

Boutrous said "the Hawaii Supreme Court’s decision flatly contradicts U.S. Supreme Court precedent and federal circuit court decisions, including the Second Circuit which held in dismissing New York City’s similar lawsuit, ‘such a sprawling case is simply beyond the limits of state law.’ These meritless state and local lawsuits violate the federal constitution and interfere with federal energy policy."

Only time will tell how the Biden administration responds to SCOTUS on the issue.