A Crowd of Climate Activists Delivered the Legal Summons to Shell’s Headquarters
Friends of the Earth Netherlands is the organization that is leading the case against Royal Dutch Shell, which is an Anglo-Dutch company based in the Hague. There, public hearings are taking place in district court for a unique lawsuit that could end up having significant consequences for the fossil fuel industry and climate on a global scale. The organization is hoping that the judge will force Shell to follow international climate goals.
While Shell stated it agrees with Friends of the Earth that action has to be taken to reduce climate change, the company seems to disagree that a court order is a good way to accomplish that. Instead, they advocate a more effective policy — investments in new technology and changing the behavior of the customers. The company has also pledged to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 and defended its actions by pointing at its investments in biofuels and renewable energy.
The Urgenda Case from Last Year Was Also a Major Step for Climate Activists
Last year, another major court battle was fought between the Urgenda Foundation and the Netherlands. Back then, the Dutch Supreme Court ruled in favor of Urgenda and had the Netherlands commit to reducing its emissions by a quarter before 2020 in comparison with the levels from 1990. Now, the new climate case is said to have the same groundbreaking potential.
Opponents of Shell say the company is causing dangerous climate change with over 95% of its activities, and that has led to the enormous support the Dutch people are giving to the cause, Friends of the Earth Netherlands. This December, there will be four days when public hearings will take place.