Five of the world’s biggest oil companies, including BP and Royal Dutch Shell, are set to face legal action from New York City, which claims that they have contributed to global warming. Bill de Blasio, the city’s mayor, said that New York would be seeking damages worth billions of dollars from the companies. The lawsuit is linked with a $20 billion spending programme on schemes designed to boost the resilience of the city of 8.5 million people to flooding and other effects of climate change. Other defendants include Chevron, Conoco Phillips and Exxon Mobil.
Times 11th Jan 2018 read more »
New York City is seeking to lead the assault on both climate change and the Trump administration with a plan to divest $5bn from fossil fuels and sue the world’s most powerful oil companies over their contribution to dangerous global warming. City officials have set a goal of divesting New York’s $189bn pension funds from fossil fuel companies within five years in what they say would be “among the most significant divestment efforts in the world to date”. Currently, New York City’s five pension funds have about $5bn in fossil fuel investments. New York state has already announced it is exploring how to divest from fossil fuels.
Guardian 10th Jan 2018 read more »
There are some worrying signs for the long-term supply of energy in Scotland so it makes sense to reconsider fracking, writes Bill Jamieson. Why waste your time? Such is the doubt that may have engulfed Jim Ratcliffe of Grangemouth-based Ineos in his efforts to develop shale fracking in Scotland. It is the most controversial – and almost universally opposed – energy innovation in Scotland. At almost every turn, his ambition to undertake fracking has encountered a hail of opposition. Local communities and environmental lobbies have fought ferociously to have it outlawed. The Scottish Government declared a moratorium in 2015 and last October, backed by a vote of MSPs, effectively placed a ban on shale development. Now comes news that Ineos has launched a legal challenge. It is seeking a judicial review, citing “serious concern s” about the ban’s legitimacy. But what serious concerns could there be? The administration commissioned verdicts from experts in what it insisted was a “carefully considered approach”. These consultations, said Energy Minister Paul Wheelhouse, showed “overwhelming” opposition to fracking; the moratorium would continue “indefinitely”. SNP, Labour, Liberal Democrat and Green MSPs voted in favour of the effective ban. The legal challenge has unleashed a fresh wave of denunciation. SNP MSP Angus MacDonald, whose Falkirk East constituency includes Grangemouth, described the legal action as “extremely disappointing”. Scottish Labour’s environment spokeswoman Claudia Beamish said Ineos was “out of step with the public and the Scottish parliament”. And Green MSP Mark Ruskell said Scotland “doesn’t want or need fracking and Ineos should accept they lost the democratic debate”.
Scotsman 11th Jan 2018 read more »