The Global Warming Solutions Act would allow activist lawyers to sue the State of Vermont if stringent carbon reduction goals are not met.
“If H688 becomes law, a 21-member Climate Cabinet would develop a Plan to mandate carbon emissions 25 percent by 2025, 40% by 2030, and 80% by 2050. Climate Cabinet appointees lacking sufficient zeal might shy away from expensive, unpopular, constitutionally-questionable executive actions like the TCI and shutting off everyone’s refrigerator or hot water heater at times of peak energy usage.
If/when those emissions benchmarks aren’t met, the environmental lawyers will do what lawyers do best: they will sue. If they win, their court costs are covered and the judge must order the regulators to do whatever it takes to meet those goals. Like – for example – the TCI or some other court-imposed carbon tax. It won’t matter, at that future date, if the governor opposes it. Neither will it matter if a chastened Legislature opposes it. All that will matter is that an activist lawyer used the powerful statutory tools created in H.688, so thoughtfully provided by the Legislature, to force a judge to force the State of Vermont to force Vermonters to pay more to heat their homes and drive to work.