Shell has been served legal notice today after Friends of the Earth Netherlands took the first step in a court case over the oil giant’s climate record.
The NGO is claiming Shell is not doing enough to cut its climate impact, despite knowledge of the dangers it poses stretching back to at least 1991, and international commitments like the Paris Agreement.
ClientEarth climate lawyer Sophie Marjanac said: “This case has huge implications. It has been launched in the Netherlands, where judges have already ruled in favour of an NGO’s climate case, forcing the Dutch government to cut its emissions. The arguments are strong and this could open the door to yet more climate challenges to fossil fuel majors, as we’ve seen with lawsuits around the world and campaigns like #ExxonKnew.”
Friends of the Earth Netherlands is calling on Shell to bring its investment decisions and business model in line with the two degree global warming target of the Paris Agreement, and to wind down its oil and gas production with the aim of hitting zero emissions by 2050. It has given the energy giant eight weeks to make the requested commitments.
The case is expected to be filed in autumn 2018 with 15,000 Dutch people lending their weight to it, as well as supporting statements from individuals and groups outside the Netherlands.
Read our Joint Amicus Brief in the Philippines Commission on Human Rights inquiry into the impacts of climate change on human rights