ERA/FoEN Back Dutch FoE To Sue Shell For Climate Pollution

P/Harcourt – Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/FoEN) has thrown its weight behind plans by Friends of the Earth Netherlands to take Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) to court if it does not act on demands to stop its destruction of the climate.

Godwin Ojo, the executive director of ERA/FoEN, said: “Shell is among the 10 biggest climate polluters in the world. It has been over 30 years that SPDC has been causing dangerous climate change, even as it continues to extract oil and gas and invest billions in the search and development of new fossil fuels.

“By the UNEP (United Nations Environment Programme) report on Assessment of Ogoni (2011), Shell is guilty of polluting community lands, community waters and gassing communities through gas flaring which is a major contributor to climate change.

“Aside the widely known Ogoni pollution, which Shell is responsible for, it still continues to flare gas in contravention of a high court judgment in Nigeria in 2005 that makes gas flaring illegal in Iwherekan and other Nigerian communities,” he said.

Ojo further said “it is becoming evident that Shell may be running from its mess but cannot evade justice,” adding that the plans by Friends of the Earth Netherlands to take Shell to court will further embolden impacted communities in the Niger Delta to institute more cases to demand that their lives seized and ruined by Shell’s activities are taken back.”

According to him, “the case is supported by Friends of the Earth International, which campaigns climate justice for people across the world impacted by dirty energy and climate change.”

He revealed that Friends of the Earth International has 75 member groups globally, many of them working to stop Shell extracting fossil fuels in their country.

ERA/FoEN has been in the vanguard of communities holding Shell and other oil corporations accountable for their pollutions. Aside several suits against Shell in Europe, In 2017, ERA/FoEN and the Ikebiri community took another bold step by filing a lawsuit in Milan against Italian oil company Eni demanding compensation for damage caused by an oil pipeline explosion in 2010.