Description: Action by eight young people asserting that the State of Florida and its agencies and officials violated fundamental rights to a stable climate system under Florida common law and the Florida constitution.
Reynolds v. Florida
Filing Date Type File Action Taken Summary 06/10/2020 Order Download Court issued written order dismissing the amended complaint with prejudice. 06/01/2020 Order Case dismissed. Florida Court Dismissed Suit Seeking to Compel Climate Action Under Florida Constitution and Common Law. At the end of a videoconference hearing on June 1, 2020, a judge in Florida Circuit Court announced that he would dismiss a lawsuit filed in 2018 by youth plaintiffs alleging that the State of Florida and state officials and agencies violated their fundamental rights to a stable climate system under Florida common law and the Florida constitution. The judge reportedly concluded that the plaintiffs sought relief that it would not be appropriate for a court to provide, but he stated that “I don’t want anyone to think I am diminishing what your clients’ concerns are. I think they’re legitimate.” The judge also said he would write his ruling so that it would be ripe for appeal. 04/16/2019 Amicus Brief Download Amici curiae brief filed. 03/08/2019 Response Download Consolidated response filed by plaintiffs to defendants' motions to dismiss. 03/07/2019 Amicus Motion Download Motion for leave to file amicus curiae brief filed by Reef Relief, the Izaak Walton League of American Florida Keys Chapter, and the League of Women Voters of Florida. 02/06/2019 Motion to Dismiss Download Motion to dismiss the first amended complaint filed by defendants State of Florida et al. 12/26/2018 Complaint Download Amended complaint filed. 09/17/2018 Response Download Response filed by plaintiffs to defendants' motions to dismiss. 04/16/2018 Complaint Download Complaint filed. Eight Young Floridians Filed Climate Change Lawsuit Against State of Florida. Eight Florida residents, all age 19 or younger, filed a lawsuit in Florida state court alleging that the State of Florida, the Florida governor, and other state officials and agencies violated their fundamental rights to a stable climate system under Florida common law and the Florida constitution. The complaint asserted that the defendants’ “contributions to climate change and creation and operation of a fossil fuel-based energy system have caused widespread harm to the Plaintiffs and the natural resources in Florida.” The plaintiffs claimed that the defendants had breached their fiduciary duty to protect Florida’s public trust resources and asserted that defendants had such a duty under a common law public trust doctrine explicitly codified in the Florida constitution. The plaintiffs also asserted that their substantive due process rights under the Florida constitution had been violated. The plaintiffs seek declaratory relief as well as orders requiring the defendants to prepare a consumption-based inventory of Florida’s greenhouse gas emissions and to “prepare and implement an enforceable comprehensive statewide remedial plan, including specific dates and benchmark targets, to phase out fossil fuel use and draw down excess atmospheric CO2 through forest and soil protection.”