A “groundbreaking” legal settlement with 13 young climate activists means Hawaii’s department of transportation will release a road map to fully decarbonize the state’s transportation systems by 2045. The June 2022 lawsuit claimed the state’s pro-fossil fuel transportation policies harmed the plaintiffs’ ability to “live healthful lives in Hawaii now and into the future”, and violated the right to a clean and healthful environment guaranteed by the state’s constitution. It is one of the first major cases “laser-focused on transportation”, said Denise Antolini, an emeritus professor of law at the University of Hawaii Law School. Promising to include young people in advisory roles and bringing together government officials, lawyers, policy makers and teenagers, the legal agreement suits “an island community like Hawaii” where people know we’re in it together, Antolini said.

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