NYC to divest from fossil fuel companies, sues 5 oil firms

De Blasio stands with science

If more and more localities sue, "we might be able to see adequate pressure applied to these companies to inspire action on climate change", he said. Schneiderman's lawsuit against ExxonMobil claims that there is evidence that Exxon had "two sets of numbers" used to discuss the impact of climate change on the company - one set for the public and one for private company conversations.

While other cities in Europe and the United States have already taken similar steps, NY hailed its move as significant as it is the biggest metropolis in the country. Invoking the imperative of climate justice, she noted that "the costs of sea level rise and ferocious and unprecedented weather events are being offloaded onto the public with taxpayers stiffed with the ever ballooning costs", leaving less money for social needs, while "the extravagant profits from destabilizing our planet's life support system are systematically privatized...."

The growing movement to hold fossil fuel companies financially responsible for the damages associated with climate change scored a major ally on Wednesday, as New York City announced that it would be filing a lawsuit against five of the largest fossil fuel companies in the world.

The legal action and the divestment draw perhaps the starkest dividing line yet between NY and the Trump administration on climate change. "Ever since Sandy, New Yorkers understand the risk, especially for the poorest and most vulnerable". The city suffered billions of dollars of damage in Hurricane Sandy.

Sea levels in NY have risen more than foot since 1900, according to the state's Department of Environmental Conservation-twice the global rate. Ideas include building a string of barrier islands from New Jersey to Long Island and simply building a wall around lower Manhattan. For example, Marin County claimed that there was a 99% risk it would experience a major flood before 2050, but it has not disclosed that information in municipal bond offerings. He said the goal was to complete the divestment within five years. "This city is acting".

Who Will Pay for It?

De Blasio's announcement raised concerns from both the energy industry and manufactures. "We unequivocally reject the allegations that Exxon Mobil has suppressed climate change research", he said. "Exxon this week hit back against the California lawsuits in a filing with a Texas state court pointing out none of the cities disclosed such risks to bond buyers and arguing the lawsuits were politically motivated and linked to cases brought by the states of NY and MA".

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It remains unclear whether a new wave of litigation - propelled by stronger climate science, reports about how much some companies knew about climate change decades ago, and somewhat divergent legal strategy - will succeed where those efforts failed.

Which is also probably one reason API is working to influence judges in America, as The Center for Public Integrity reported in 2017.

The lawsuit cited recently-uncovered documents about what oil companies knew about the threat from climate change.

Ms Kelly said: "The mayor's announcement may raise his profile, but it will do nothing to address climatechange and will ultimately fail".

Naturally, the move prompted swift condemnation from the fossil fuel industry.

Despite the city's many steps to prepare for and respond to climate change, Mayor de Blasio last fall opposed a proposal for charging drivers in the city's high traffic areas, a plan that would have reduced pollution.

"Today Mayor de Blasio turned his back millions of first responders, police officers and public employees who depend on their pensions to provide for themselves and their families in retirement", said Karen Moreau of the American Petroleum Institute, the largest USA oil and gas lobbying group.


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