At the risk of moving this blog in a more political direction, I thought I would mention An Inconvenient Truth, a very convincing documentary about the imminent and severe consequences of global warming. It's a must-see movie, despite the unnecessary attention it pays to Al Gore's life.
I thought the movie was worth mentioning on the blog for a couple of related reasons. First, Al Gore makes a good case that addressing global warming is an ethical requirement. With that point, it is very hard to disagree, but the ethical requirement is not directed at lawyers specifically.
Second, and on a related note, I began wondering what, if anything, lawyers can do to address the problem. The legal profession has been at the forefront of addressing many social ills, and as this month's ABA Journal suggests, global warming is not an exception: lawyers have brought a number of creative lawsuits around the country to try to force changes to our nation's environmental policy. But I couldn't help but think that, unlike some other social ills, this problem is not likely to be solved or even addressed in a significant way through litigation.
Am I right about the limited role that litigation can play in this context? If so, can the legal profession play some positive role in bringing about useful political and cultural changes? If so, what specific ideas do people have?