Shell ordered to cut emissions in landmark Dutch climate case

A Dutch court ordered oil giant Shell on May 26 to slash its greenhouse gas emissions in a landmark victory for climate activists with implications for energy firms worldwide.

Shell must reduce its carbon emissions by 45 percent by 2030 as it is contributing to the "dire" effects of climate change, the district court in The Hague ruled.

Campaigners hailed the "historic" verdict as the first time that a company had been made to align its policy with the 2015 Paris climate accords.

Dubbed "the People versus Shell", the case was backed by seven environmental groups and more than 17,000 Dutch citizens.

Judge Larisa Alwin said in the verdict that Anglo-Dutch multinational Shell has an "enormous CO2 emission for which it is responsible".

Shell "is contributing to the dire consequences of climate change for the population" and must implement the decision "at once".

Shell said it "fully expects to appeal today's disappointing court decision".

"Urgent action is needed on climate change which is why we have accelerated our efforts to become a net-zero emissions energy company by 2050, in step with society," a Shell spokesman said in a statement.

With energy firms around the world facing growing pressure over climate change, Shell set new targets in February to reduce its net carbon footprint compared to a 2016 baseline by 20 percent by 2030, 45 percent by 2035 and 100 percent by 2050.

Dozens of campaigners hugged, clapped and shouted "climate justice" outside the court as the verdict was announced, an AFP reporter said.

In a show of solidarity, a group of around 50 Dutch cyclists had also cycled from the north of the Netherlands to mark the judgment.

"This is a historical day," said Donald Pols...

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