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Don't mess with young people.

Climate change is being taken very seriously by the youth around us. It is their futures we tinker with when we make short-sighted decisions about pipelines and fracking and water issues and greenhouse gasses and emissions and and and... To expect them to sit idly by as the world they will inherit continues to be avoidably degraded is to not know young people very well. In a federal case brought by California youth against the US government, the Department of the Interior, Department of Agriculture, Department of Commerce, Department of Defense, Department of Energy, and the Environmental Protection Agency are being accused of violation of constitutionally protected rights by refusing to take clear action about the climate crisis.

The case is on the trail to the Supreme Court, with appeals courts stops along the way. The group Our Children's Trust, an organizations dedicated to "Establishing the legal right to a healthy atmosphere and stable climate for all present and future generations," is leading the charge.

Some eyes may roll and some may mutter about litigiousness and courtroom charades taking up valuable judicial time, but the matter is being taken very seriously, as well as several similar actions brought on state levels. While there has not been a precedent that could be categorized in the same way, there is legal standing for the accusation that the national government is failing in their responsibility as "sovereigns" required to safeguard resources that future generations will depend upon for survival.

evox ACTION: Find out more and learn ways to volunteer and take action at the website for Our Children's Trust (www.OurChildrensTrust.org)

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About The Author

Andrew Mersmann's picture

Andrew is the author of Frommer's global guide to volunteer vacations, "500 Places Where You Can Make a Difference" (Gold Medal Winner from Society of American Travel Writers: Best Guide Book 2010). He spent more than a decade on the editorial team of PASSPORT Magazine. He has volunteered and led teams on service projects around the world, and is honored to be on the boards of directors for the Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation (AARBF.org) and Mentor Artists Playwrights Project (mentorartists.org). Mersmann has been a featured speaker, interview guest, or moderator on several travel talks, from the New York Times Travel Show, Smithsonian Associates, and the 92nd Street Y-TriBeCa to Oprah and Friends, Animal House, and The Focus Group on satellite radio as well as on NY1 television. Past participant at the Clinton Global Initiative and judge for Condé Nast World Changers Conference, he blogs about volunteering and service travel at www.ChangeByDoing.com. As part of the evox television team, he is dedicated to audience engagement, so if you're not engaged, he needs to be thumped on the head (gently)...or at least told (nicely). Twitter: /ChangeByDoing

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