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Campaign Behind Landmark Case Against Shell Targets More Energy Groups

Milieudefensie, the Dutch chapter of Friends of the Earth activists who won a landmark climate case against Shell in 2021, now urge more than two dozen other multinationals, including BP, Exxon, Vitol, and LyondellBasell, to implement plans to slash emissions by at least 45 percent by 2030 from 2019 levels.   

In a letter sent on Thursday to 29 “big polluters”, including Shell, BP, Exxon, Vitol, LyondellBasell, RWE, Unilever, Uniper, Stellantis, Schiphol, ABN AMRO, and others, Milieudefensie asks the companies to respond how they plan to cut their Scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions by at least 45 percent by 2030.

“It is clear that major polluters now have to go green quickly, because the climate crisis cannot wait,” director Donald Pols said in a statement.

“We are very clear that in the end, if needed, we are willing to go to court. But of course we are hoping these companies will be moving by themselves,” Milieudefensie policy officer Peer de Rijk told Reuters in an interview published on Thursday.

“We are willing to engage in talks, but we are in a hurry as well, so we won’t accept talks for the sake of talks themselves,” de Rijk added.

Milieudefensie expects the companies to respond with climate plans by April 15, 2022, it said in the letter to the CEOs.

The same campaign group won in May 2021 a landmark lawsuit against Shell after a Dutch court ordered the supermajor to slash its carbon emissions by 45 percent by 2030 in a ruling brought by environmentalists that could set precedents for other oil companies.

The court in The Hague ordered Shell to slash its carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 45 percent within ten years and start complying with the ruling “immediately,” as the judge held the company liable for the emissions caused by the use of its products and said its climate policy was not specific enough.  

Shell is appealing the court ruling, while in the meantime, it moved its tax residence to the UK from the Netherlands and dropped its dual share structure and ‘Royal Dutch’ from its name.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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