Montana “has recognized climate change as a growing concern for decades,” Anne Hedges, director of policy and legislative affairs at the Montana Environmental Information Center, testified to a Montana court on Thursday. Despite this, the state has never denied a permit for any fossil fuel-related project, she said.

“Montana is not walking, it is running, in the wrong direction to address the climate crisis,” Hedges concluded.

Her testimony was part of a landmark youth-led constitutional climate trial currently underway in the state capital of Helena. The case, brought by 16 young Montanans against their state government, contends that Montana is exacerbating dangerous climate change through persistent promotion and permitting of fossil fuels, while simultaneously ignoring the climate impacts of these activities. This conduct runs afoul of Montana’s constitutional right to a clean and healthful environment, plaintiffs say.