Shell appeals against Dutch court's landmark climate ruling

Shell squared off against seven environmental groups in a Dutch appeals court Tuesday, with climate activists accusing the multinational oil giant of failing to implement a landmark 2021 judgement.

Judges at The Hague District Court ruled three years ago that Shell must reduce its carbon emissions by 45 percent by 2030, as it was contributing to the "dire" effects of climate change.

That ruling was seen as an historic victory for climate change campaigners as it was the first time a company had been made to align its policy with the 2015 Paris climate change accords.

Shell, which called litigation "ineffective" to address climate change, is appealing the 2021 ruling, while environmental groups accuse the oil giant of failing to take action.

"Justice delayed is justice denied," said Donald Pols, who heads Milieudefensie, the Dutch arm of Friends of the Earth, who originally brought the case.

"I hope this case will change the way that Shell does business... as it is currently one of the largest polluters in the world," he added.

"We are very confident. We have been working for more than two years towards this moment," Pols told AFP outside the Hague courthouse, where four days of hearings are scheduled.

A new study revealed "that Shell will continue to invest billions of dollars in (new) oil and gas projects for decades to come," Milieudefensie added in a statement ahead of the case.

"The scientific basis on which we've founded our claims against Shell has only solidified," Milieudefensie's lawyer Roger Cox said ahead of the hearings.


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