It might be possible for the justice system to fight global warming

As things stand, there is no law that says causing climate change is illegal; as things stand, any deaths related to climate change are “accidental killings,” i.e. killings that are the result of the activity of nature or lawful acts.

As things stand, there is no law that says causing climate change is illegal; as things stand, any deaths related to climate change are “accidental killings,” i.e. killings that are the result of the activity of nature or lawful acts.

Whether there is an element of involuntary manslaughter, i.e. lawful acts carried out in an unlawful way, is perhaps too complex to measure.

So, in any case, neither side at this point is guilty until such time as one or the other can prove some perhaps proportional degree of culpability or negligence and even then this would be insufficient until a law censoring or mitigating human produced or contributed climate change is enacted by an act of Parliament or the international courts to make such acts or portions of such acts illegal.

I’m not stating an opinion one way or the other. I’m just stating a fact that as it stands, there is no law saying climate change is illegal — even if it’s killing people.

A judge can only judge on the “existing” laws. He or she can’t make up new ones as that is a legislative matter, I suppose.

If people want a new law, they have to lobby politicians for it.

It would be difficult to make climate change illegal as it would be difficult to measure instances of environmental misconduct. So perhaps such a law could only be enforced in extreme cases.

Do people think the average Albertan likes trashing up our backyard with sludge pits and tailings ponds to sell our oil at bargain-basement prices to a world that then slaps us in the face by pointing out what a messy backyard we have?

Give us a break here. We’re not the stupid ones here. People around the globe are carrying on with unsustainable lifestyles and putting the burden on a non-renewable resource.

Ed Jonas

Red Deer

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