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Shell is facing Dutch courts when activists demand an end to emissions



(Reuters) – Environmental activists took Royal Dutch Shell to court on Tuesday, demanding that the energy company drastically reduce oil and gas production to limit its effects on climate change.

Seven activist groups, including Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth Netherlands, filed a lawsuit in the Netherlands in April last year on behalf of more than 17,000 Dutch citizens who say the oil party threatens human rights as it continues to invest billions in fossil fuel production.

They demand that Shell reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by almost half by 2030 and to zero by 2050, which would effectively force the Anglo-Dutch company to move away from oil and gas quickly and direct its investments to sustainable energy sources.

Shell has repeatedly said that it was agreed that measures to combat climate change were needed, but that this case would not help.

"What will accelerate the energy transition is effective policy t in technology and changing customer behavior. None of these will be achieved with this court action," the company said in a statement.

The complainants say that Shell must take its responsibility, as it is fully aware of the harmful effects of fossil fuels on climate change. [1

9659002] "Shell's policy puts it on a collision course with international climate agreements," the group's lawyer, Roger Cox, said in his opening statement to the court.

"It is extremely dangerous and slows down any action taken by individual countries. May be willing to take."

Shell has increased investment in biofuels, hydrogen and wind power in recent years and has promised to reduce CO2 emissions by 30% to 2035, compared to 2016 levels, and by 65% ​​by 2050.

But the green groups demand at least a 45% reduction by 2030, compared to the pollution caused in 2019, as a step towards carbon-neutral production two decades

They feel strengthened by the so-called “Urgenda case, in which the Dutch Supreme Court for one year ordered its government to intensify the fight against climate change, because it said that lack of action put Dutch citizens at risk. cannot be held accountable in the same way as governments.

The District Court in The Hague, where Shell is headquartered, has scheduled four days of hearings in the case in December.

It is not yet clear when the court will make a decision.

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