“President Trump's four years in office brought a steady stream of courtroom brawls over environmental issues before an increasingly conservative judiciary. 2020 was no exception.
The last 12 months have been marked by a fresh crop of Supreme Court rulings on environmental questions, major courtroom victories for Black communities fighting energy projects and a notable loss for a group of kids who want the government to help protect the next generation from the harms associated with a rapidly warming planet.
This was also the year that Trump shattered records for judicial appointments in a single term, including the confirmation of a sixth conservative Supreme Court justice, boosting the odds that aggressive climate action by President-elect Joe Biden — or any other future president — will land before a skeptical judiciary.
“My advice to the Biden administration is to put the bobbleheads of the Trump appointees on their desk and ask them, ‘Do you agree with this interpretation of the law? Can I get your vote for this?'” said Pat Parenteau, a professor and senior counsel in Vermont Law School's Environmental Advocacy Clinic.”