► U.S. Judge Rudolph Contreras of DC; one of the Good Guys Print E-mail

U.S. Judge Rudolph Contreras of DC; one of the Good Guys


The District of Columbia provided Rudolph Contreras with a law license in 1991 after he graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Law.


In one mater, Judge Contreras presided over a case involving the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) as the defendant and two advocacy groups, WildEarth Guardians and Physicians for Social Responsibility as the plaintiffs.


The plaintiffs were questioning the legality of the Trump Administration and BLM for authorizing drilling for oil and natural gas on approximately 300,000 acres of public land in Wyoming.


In ruling on the plaintiff’s case, Judge Contreras issued a ruling that states in part:

  • “Given the national, cumulative nature of climate change, considering each individual drilling project in a vacuum deprives the agency and the public of the context necessary to evaluate oil and gas drilling on federal land before irretrievably committing to that drilling.”
  • “Climate change, and humanity’s ability to combat it, are increasingly prominent topics of public discourse. This case concerns the attention the government must give climate change when taking action that may increase its effects.”
  • “BLM failed to take a 'hard look' at [greenhouse gas] emissions from the Wyoming Lease Sales.”

With said ruling, Trump’s overt attempt to treat climate change with total contempt and in the process play favorites with the energy sector to the detriment of everyone else was rendered moot.


Kudos to Judge Contreras for exhibiting the courage and fortitude to call out the Trump administration and BLM for acting contrary to comply with existing laws and/or regulations.


As we speak (ca. April 2019), Judge Contreras continues to sit as DC District Court judge in Washington, DC.



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