Media Advisory: UH law school is co-organizer of climate change event at State Capitol

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Denise Antolini, (808) 554-7215
Associate Dean, William S. Richardson School of Law
Kyle Groetzinger , (202) 478-6138
Posted: May 2, 2019

WHAT: The University of Hawai’i Environmental Law Program at the William S. Richardson School of Law has invited local and mainland experts to discuss the science and economics behind the impacts of climate change on Hawai’i and legal strategies to address them. Panelists will speak about the new wave of climate liability lawsuits brought by state and local governments in the U.S. as an effective tool to shift the economic burden of climate change from taxpayers to polluters.

WHERE: Room 325, State Capitol Building

WHEN: Friday, May 3, 2019 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.


Speakers: U.S. Senator Mazie Hirono (by video), U.S. Senator Brian Schatz, state Representative Nicole Lowen
Moderators: Associate Dean Denise Antolini, UH Professors Maxine Burkett, David Forman, Richard Wallsgrove  


  • Alyssa Johl (Center for Climate Integrity)
  • Professors Chip Fletcher, Kapua Sproat, Makena Coffman (UH law school)
  • Professor Ann Carlson (University of California Los Angeles School of Law)
  • Vic Sher, attorney (Sher Edling) 
  • Marti Townsend (Sierra Club of Hawai’i)

WHY: The lawsuits charge that ExxonMobil, Shell and other industries have known for decades that their products were causing climate change but, instead of taking action, they chose to manufacture doubt and deceive the public in order to obstruct a transition to clean energy. The litigation further alleges that once avoidable climate impacts are here and taxpayers are footing the bill. This growing wave of climate liability lawsuits across the country seek to recover damages they allege have been knowingly caused by the products of Big Oil and Gas.  

The Center for Climate Integrity, a project of the Institute for Governance & Sustainable Development, launched in 2017. CCI works with partners in communities across the country to educate the public and policymakers about the massive costs of coping with the damage attributable to global warming, and supports efforts to make climate polluters pay their fair share.

For more information on what ExxonMobil and others in the industry knew about climate change and when, check out the Center for Climate Integrity’s “Smoking Guns” document archive.

For more information, visit: