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Montana’s pro-fossil fuel policies are violating its citizens’ constitutional right to “a clean and healthful environment,” allege sixteen young activists in the case of Held v. Montana, the country’s first youth-led climate trial.

In 2022, the two sides of this debate in Montana were personified by state lobbyists simultaneously representing fossil fuel interests and schools, businesses, and other interests being harmed by the climate crisis. Westmoreland Mining is the sixth-biggest coal producer in the country, and Montana the sixth-biggest coal producing state.

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