March 6, 2020

STATEMENT: People power prevails despite fossil fuel industry legal scheming

Just in this morning: an exciting update on a case in the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals between the City of Baltimore and 26 fossil fuel companies (including BP, Chevron, ExxonMobil, and Royal Dutch Shell).

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the City of Baltimore and an earlier U.S. district court decision to keep the case in state court, rather than moving it to federal courts. One of the fossil fuel industry’s responses to a rising tide of litigation has been to use legal scheming designed to stall litigation cases or move them to jurisdictions the industry views as more favorable. 

See below for a statement from Sriram Madhusoodanan, our Deputy Campaigns Director.

“The Fourth Circuit Court’s decision today is a critical victory for people over the very Big Polluters that have knowingly fueled this crisis for decades. As with Big Tobacco before it, Big Oil is starting to discover that its legal muscle is no match for the power of the people. This decision has wide implications for similar court cases across the country, and a growing movement of mayors, cities, state attorney generals, and frontline communities globally will ensure that the fossil fuel industry and other Big Polluters are held accountable for their deadly abuses, and made to pay for real climate solutions. We look forward to the case’s favorable ultimate judgement, that includes clear, just, and equitable guidance to ensure that the damages awarded go directly to communities most affected by the climate crisis.”

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