A Washington-state judge has left climate activists steaming after he ruled the ‘necessity defense’ couldn’t be used in the trial of an oil-pipeline saboteur.
Ken Ward, an extreme activist and co-founder of Climate Disobedience Center, argued before Judge Michael E. Rickert he broke the law to “save the planet.”
That didn’t play well with the Skagit County judge who also said he acknowledges there is a great deal of controversy over whether #Climate Change even exists.
Rickert said the “extent of what we’re doing to ourselves and our climate and our planet, there’s great controversy over that.” Those comments came after Ward presented a “necessity defense” in court, arguing that he was justified in his actions due to the “grave threat of climate change.”
The judge is now coming under fire from activists for blocking the unusual defense, who argue the ‘#Science is settled’ and that the courts should recognize this consensus.
Climate Disobedience Center
Ward, a 60-year-old Oregonian, sabotaged the emergency safety valve of the TransMountain pipeline Skagit County, endangering everyone operating the pipeline.
The defendant said the court’s decision was “shocked and deeply worrisome” for his case.
Ward believes the planet is in the final stages of collapse and said the judge’s decision to “blithely dismiss the biggest problem facing the world is chilling.” But other judges have given wider latitude.