Climate Change Litigation: The Children’s Lawsuit and Local Government Cases

Andrea Rodgers, Senior Litigation Attorney, Our Children’s Trust

Andrea Rodgers is a Senior Litigation Attorney for Our Children’s Trust, where she serves as co-counsel on the constitutional youth climate lawsuit against the federal government, Juliana v. United States, and as lead counsel on the constitutional youth climate lawsuits against the state of Washington, Aji v. State of Washington, and the state of Florida, Reynolds v. State of Florida.

After graduation from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1998 and the Arizona State University School of Law in 2001, where she served as co-executive editor of Jurimetrics: The Journal of Law, Science and Technology, she clerked for the Hon. John C. Gemmill on the Arizona Court of Appeals. She has served as an Honors Attorney for the U.S. Department of Transportation, In-House Legal Counsel for the Snoqualmie Indian Tribe, and Staff Attorney for the Western Environmental Law Center. Her environmental law practice focuses on reducing pollution from industrial agricultural operations, protecting and enhancing instream flows for people and fish, and fighting climate change on behalf of young people and future generations.

Vic Sher, Partner, Sher Edling LLP

Vic Sher is a Partner at Sher Edling, LPP. He has spent his career developing and prosecuting unparalleled legal strategies to protect people and the planet.

From 1998 through 2011, Vic’s practice focused solely on representing public water suppliers and other public agencies in lawsuits against the manufacturers of toxic chemicals polluting drinking water sources. In 2009, Vic served as New York City’s lead trial counsel in City of New York v. ExxonMobil, a federal jury trial over MTBE contamination in Queens that resulted in a verdict for the City of $104.7 million. His team was recognized as a Public Justice Trial Lawyer of the Year finalist. In a federal multidistrict litigation, In Re: MTBE Litigation, involving hundreds of public water agencies around the country, Vic was designated by the court as national co-lead counsel for the plaintiffs. He also represented numerous public water agencies and utilities in matters involving a variety of chemicals including MTBE, TCP, DBCP, PCE, and DDT.

Vic practiced with the public interest law firm Earthjustice (then known as the Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund) from October 1986 until June 1997, including as its President from 1994 to 1997. As President, he acted as the CEO for the world’s largest public interest environmental law firm, with 50 lawyers in ten offices. The American Lawyer called some of his work during this period among the “most important public lands management litigation in this country’s history.” He also litigated many cases to protect communities from toxic chemicals, preserve endangered ecosystems and species, conserve public lands, and improve air and water quality.

Named a 2011 LawDragon 500 lawyer and a Northern California Super Lawyer since 2005, Vic received a Pew Scholarship in Conservation and the Environment in 1992, and shared the Natural Resources Council of America Award of Achievement for Policy Activities in 1993. The American Lawyer Magazine named him for its 1997 “Public Sector 45,” a list of “45 young lawyers outside the private sector whose vision and commitment are changing lives”.