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Sue 'em!

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The long, winding, seaboard highway connecting Eureka to Arcata is the road most at risk from global warming in the entire state of California. It'll cost an estimated $31 million to patch up that stretch of U.S. Highway 101 until about 2030 or so, at which point those patches will probably need replacing.

Experts estimate that Humboldt County will need to spend a total of about $2.5 billion to stop large, populated parts of Humboldt County from being flooded.

Several cities and counties in California have filed suit in the past two years against Big Gas/Big Oil, including Richmond, Santa Cruz, San Francisco, Oakland, and Marin and San Mateo counties. And that's just in California.

You can find a list here: www.payupclimatepolluters.org/cases/

Some places brought their lawsuits solely via the city or county government, like San Francisco. Others were assisted in their efforts by a law firm focusing on this kind of work.

The law firm probably is doing the work on contingency, as they ask for attorney's fees under California Code of Civil Procedure 1021.5 in their complaint. ["A court may award attorneys' fees to a successful party against one or more opposing parties in any action which has resulted in the enforcement of an important right affecting the public interest ... ."]

Marin County sued Big Oil with the help of a Bay Area firm and it anticipates half as much destruction as we do, with a larger budget to boot. Maybe Humboldt County should sue Big Oil to help offset the cost of preparing for global warming?

Sean DeVries, Redway


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