The Hague District Court ruled today that Royal Dutch Shell’s emissions reduction plan isn’t enough to address its climate change contribution and must drastically reduce its carbon emissions in compliance with the Paris Climate Accord.
According to UPI, by the year 2030 Shell must cut its emissions by 45% which is below levels from 2 years ago. The suit was initiated by Dutch citizens and environmentalist groups, such as Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth, during 2019. The plaintiffs claimed Shell’s continued gas and oil production jeopardized climate stability which violated their human rights.
Worst of all, this legal victory could give backing other cases like it worldwide, including in the United States. This includes other related lawsuits where citizens and environmentalist groups are suing fossil fuel companies for similar reasons like outlined in the Dutch case. Fortunately, Shell can appeal the court’s decision and, hopefully, it can be overturned.
If the court’s ruling stands, then Shell will eventually have to destroy itself from within resulting from its effects. The company will have a harder time being able to benefit from making oil and gas products where Shell could shut down. Then again, that is the point of such agreements like the Paris Climate Accord. Developed countries, like the United States, suffer while allegedly developing countries, like China, ultimately benefit.