NZCSET – mischievous or sensible?

The NZ Climate Science Coalition’s opponents have attacked it for creating a Trust (the NZ Climate Science Education Trust, NZCSET) for the sole purpose of unfairly (perhaps, in the opinion of some, unlawfully) avoiding costs if they lost the court case against NIWA.

However, there are sensible reasons for creating a legal entity to take someone to court. One of the first questions a judge asks is “who are the parties?” If that simple question cannot be answered by naming a legal entity the case doesn’t get off the ground and the judge just gets annoyed.

So, although the NZCSC did the scientific work in challenging NIWA’s techniques, it couldn’t take the court proceedings. An unincorporated association cannot sue or be sued, as it has no legal existence separate from its multifarious members. Continue Reading →