Environmentalists are furious with Washington Gov. Jay Inslee for appealing a recent court ruling forcing state regulators to impose global warming regulations after he publicly supported the ruling, even making it part of his re-election platform.
Activists are planning to fast for three days in front of the state capital building in Olympia starting Tuesday in protest to Inslee’s supposed turnaround. Environmentalists are also protesting rules set forth by Inslee’s administration that don’t go far enough to reduce emissions.
Eco-protesters are also asking supporters to attend a public meeting on Inslee’s so-called Clean Air Rule, which activists say doesn’t go far enough.
“We need to change that — so that we, the public, the parents and grandparents of WA, can push our leaders to make this a meaningful and ambitious Rule that will protect our children’s right to clean air,” reads a Facebook page for the event shared by Our Children’s Trust.
Our Children’s Trust is the environmental group representing eight kids who sued Washington state for not doing enough to fight global warming. The kids won their case in April when King County Superior Court Judge Hollis Hill ordered state officials to quickly impose a new global warming rule.
“This is not a situation that these children can wait on. Polar bears can’t wait, the people of Bangladesh can’t wait,” Hill said. “I don’t have jurisdiction over their needs in this matter, but I do have jurisdiction in this court, and for that reason I’m taking this action.”
Inslee celebrated the court decision, and he even used it to get volunteers to sign up with his campaign.
“Thanks to those eight kids, the court has affirmed our plan to act, contrary to the assertion of those who continue to obstruct action on climate change and ocean acidification,” Inslee’s campaign wrote in an email sent out right after the court ruling. “That’s why this election is so important.”
The Inslee administration, however, is appealing Hill’s ruling. In June, the state Department of Ecology appealed the court order, arguing they needed more time to issue a rule to cut state greenhouse gas emissions.
State officials want the rule to be properly vetted and go through public comment, which a court order would not allow them to do. Now, they’ve sparked the anger of environmentalists who are literally going to starve themselves until they get what they want.
“The public needs to understand that what the governor and the Department of Ecology are doing is greenwashing,” Julia Olson, who heads Our Children’s Trust, said in a statement released in June.
“First, Inslee’s proposed rule would lock in unacceptable levels of pollution and catastrophic harm to the young people of Washington,” she said. “And now, after using the youth’s court victory as a campaign platform, Inslee’s administration is trying to get the court ruling overturned.”
“We need courage and leadership right now, not gamesmanship and half-baked plans. Survival is at stake. Get on board governor, or get out of the way,” Olson said.
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