Winning against Big Gas & Oil
Posted by Deirdre Duff on May 27, 2021 at 05:35 PM
Taking down the fossil fuel industry. It’s critical in the fight against climate change. It can be a daunting challenge at times - a real David versus Goliath fight. But not this week. Or last week for that matter. Because it’s been an exciting, hopeful few weeks in the battle against Big Gas and Oil.
Last week, the International Energy Agency (IEA) finally confirmed that new oil and gas fields should not be approved beyond this year. That’s obvious to us. New oil and gas development should have stopped years ago. But the IEA has promoted fossil fuels for a very long time. So this shift is a big deal!
Hot on the heels of the IEA’s announcement, came an announcement from the Irish Government to introduce a moratorium on LNG terminals for importing fracked gas.
Working with grassroots groups, we’ve been campaigning against fracked gas for years. This moratorium, while not the permanent ban we want, is a big step towards just that. It will knock investor confidence in fracked gas import projects - and could be the final nail in the coffin for fracked gas import terminals in Ireland.
We’ll keep up the pressure for a permanent ban - our work isn’t finished - but this is a big milestone to celebrate! So whether you’ve taken our fracked gas e-actions, come to a protest or called your local TDs, take time to enjoy this win with us! Your action has had a big impact.
More good news arrived yesterday! Our colleagues at Friends of the Earth Netherlands had a huge victory against Shell, one of the world’s most infamous fossil fuel companies. They brought Shell to court - and won!
For the first time in history, a judge held a corporation responsible for causing dangerous climate change. The court in The Hague ruled that Shell must reduce its CO2 emissions by 45% within 10 years. Our reaction to the ruling was covered in the Irish Independent here and there’s a press release about it here.
Friends of the Earth International hope this ruling will trigger a wave of climate litigation against big polluters, to force them to stop extracting and burning fossil fuels. Check out this guide to help spread the news about the ruling - to increase its impact and inspire further action!
Of course the problems with Shell go far beyond its carbon emissions. Shell has left a trail of destruction across the world, violating human rights, contaminating water and land, and wreaking havoc and violence on local communities. Not only that, but Shell’s false “solutions” to the climate crisis - such as gigantic country-sized offsetting schemes - could further drive land grabbing in some of the world’s poorest countries. (You can read more about this here).
Wednesday’s court ruling doesn’t go far enough to address all of Shell’s human rights and climate abuses. But it does send a strong message that change is on the way. And that human rights can and should take precedence over corporate profit. It gives us hope to keep fighting the good fight. Because sometimes, against the odds, we can win big.