Panel rejects appeal in global warming/Katrina lawsuit
Published: May 15,2013
Tags: appeal, bench, case, court, decision, environment, flood, flooding, global warming, greenhouse gas, home, homeowner, house, hurricane, landowner, law, lawsuit, legal, rain, residence, resident, ruling, storm, storm surge, trial, tropical, wind
MISSISSIPPI GULF COAST — A federal appeals panel has upheld the dismissal of a lawsuit filed by a group of Mississippi Gulf Coast residents and landowners who alleged that emissions by energy companies contributed to global warming, which intensified Hurricane Katrina, which, in turn, damaged their property.
In the lawsuit, the landowners sought compensatory and punitive damages against 32 companies and the Tennessee Valley Authority. The companies had argued that global warming was not attributable only to them but resulted from the emissions of greenhouse gases from millions of sources dating back to the Industrial Revolution.
The case has taken a circuitous route through the federal courts before winding up yesterday before a three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.
The landowners sued in September of 2005, about a month after Katrina. U.S. District Judge Louis Guirola Jr. in Gulfport dismissed the lawsuit in 2007 with prejudice, meaning it could not be filed again.
A 5th Circuit panel in October of 2009 reinstated part of the lawsuit. The companies appealed and 5th Circuit agreed to a hearing before the full court. Before a hearing could be held, the 5th Circuit found it didn’t have a quorum — or majority — of judges available to hear the companies’ appeal after many of them recused themselves.
The 5th Circuit dismissed the appeal and the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear the case shortly thereafter.
The same group of Gulf Coast residents and property owners filed in May of 2011 what they conceded in court records were essentially several of the same arguments against many of the same energy companies in the same Mississippi district court. The district court in March of 2012 ruled that, among other things, that the doctrine of res judicata barred their claims.
The doctrine of res judicata prevents the same parties from re-litigating the same issue after a final court decision.
Yesterday, the three-judge upheld the Mississippi judge’s decision. The panel said it would not let landowners renew an appeal in what was the same case.
To sign up for Mississippi Business Daily Updates, click here.
One Response to “Panel rejects appeal in global warming/Katrina lawsuit”
FOLLOW THE MBJ ON TWITTERMy Tweets
Top Posts & Pages
- UMMC reaching out after death of high school football player
- Former Godwin CEO Danny Mitchell dies at 66
- Northrop Grumman lands $354M Air Force contract for Global Hawks
- MDOT: Work on I-269 is on schedule, several phases at halfway point
- Thousands of acres of Delta farmland to go on auction block
- More school districts join MAEP lawsuit brought by Musgrove
- S&P: State in top 10 in U.S. in sales tax dependency
- Court tosses challenge to Miss. Silicon’s clean air permit
- Biloxi baseball project still alive but may be held for 2015