28 oktober 2021

Friends of the Earth Netherlands: "With these targets, Shell will not meet the verdict"

Friends of the Earth Netherlands:

"With these targets, Shell will not meet the verdict"

AMSTERDAM, 28 OCTOBER 2021 - Friends of the Earth Netherlands (Milieudefensie) calls this morning's announcement by Shell of a '50% reduction in CO2 emissions' "tinkering on the edges". Friends of the Earth Netherlands director Donald Pols: "Whatever impression Shell is trying to portray, in the end it comes down to the fact that Shell will only reduce its total CO2 emissions by 2.4% in 2030, and with that Shell does not comply with the verdict and is still causing dangerous climate change."

Shell also incorrectly states that the verdict is only about its own emissions and not the emissions of its customers. CEO Ben van Beurden indicated this several times in the press conference about the third quarter results. However, the court is forcing Shell to reduce CO2 emissions throughout the entire value chain with 45% by 2030. Roger Cox, lawyer for Friends of the Earth Netherlands in the climate case against Shell: "Van Beurden's assertion is very remarkable. He knows very well that the court ruling concerns all global emissions for which Shell is responsible, including those from products sold. Van Beurden has something to explain to investors and shareholders, because they too deserve clarity on the implementation of the entire verdict."

Donald Pols: "The lion's share of Shell's emissions, some 90 percent, is in the sale of its products. In short, Shell will have to take major steps in order to comply with the court ruling. We call on Shell to halve its emissions as soon as possible, including those of its products."

A Climate Obligation is Needed
In Shell's presentation, the company stated that it cannot do more about its customers' emissions than to implement its existing climate ambition. According to analyses from a report published on Friday by Global Cimate Insights(1) this is insufficient and Shell is not going to meet the verdict or its own climate ambition. Van Beurden's announcements do not change this. Friends of the Earth Netherlands finds this unacceptable. "Shell still has no concrete plan for 90% of its emissions," says director Donald Pols: "Companies will not prevent dangerous climate change on their own. Action is needed now. We still have eight years to prevent the worst. That's why Friends of the Earth Netherlands is calling on governments to come up with a legal climate obligation that will ensure companies have to rapidly reduce CO2 emissions. This way, we protect our future and that of our children. It's climate obligation or climate crisis.”

Presentation at COP26 Climate Summit in Glasgow
Because of the urgency of the climate crisis, Friends of the Earth Netherlands is still not ruling out a new trip to court and is sharing its knowledge with parties that want to fight big polluters. During the upcoming international climate summit in Glasgow, the organisation will publish a manual for citizens and other civil society organisations titled: 'How to sue a company like Shell'. Pols: "The most recent reports have shown that the time of just talking is over. We now have to get to work and give the big polluting companies that do not participate a run for their money. Via the law, via public pressure and if necessary in court."

Follow Donald Pols on Twitter