NYC Sues Fossil Fuel Industry over Hidden Costs of Climate Change

Angelo Anderson
January 13, 2018

It's taking some of the most powerful oil companies to task by suing them.

During his press conference, Mayor de Blasio said that New York City was not waiting for the federal government to act.

New York's move on climate isn't without its critics - environmentalists have complained about De Blasio's opposition to congestion charging for vehicles and his own frequent auto trips to the gym.

Commenting on the news that New York City is divesting its massive pension fund from fossil fuels, McKibben says "its decision signals the start of a real rout". "As climate change continues to worsen, it's up to the fossil fuel companies whose greed put us in this position to shoulder the cost of making NY safer and more resilient".

The legal action and the divestment draw perhaps the starkest dividing line yet between NY and the Trump administration on climate change. But today, we talk about how we break the cycle. And it's time to do something different in New York City, isn't it? NY is the neighborhood of the very big money managers.

NY was badly rattled by Hurricane Sandy in 2012 and faces costs escalating into the tens of billions of dollars in order to protect low-lying areas such as lower Manhattan and the area around JFK airport from being inundated by further severe storms fueled by rising sea levels and atmospheric warming. The news also comes as research shows that climate change will pose a major threat to millions of people living around rivers.


"The big oil and gas companies still have a long way to go and a lot of money to make", said Ferraro. NY state had previously subpoenaed (request for evidence by court order) documents from Exxon, in 2016, in a bid to uncover whether the oil company misled investors over the risks of climate change.

The divestment itself will be brushed off by major fossil fuel companies but could help galvanize political action even as the Trump administration peels away environmental regulations and throws open more USA land and waters to drilling and mining. New York's attorney general, Eric Schneiderman, is investigating Exxon over this alleged deception.

Exxon is fighting a MA investigation as well.

New York City is the latest - and largest - U.S. city to sue five big oil companies for billions in damages from the impacts of climate change, such as rising seas and extreme weather.

Such action is a departure from US President Donald Trump's position of ignoring the threats from climate change. The filing says that since the industrial revolution, only 100 companies are responsible for the majority of the greenhouse gas emissions with the five named in their suit as the worst offenders. Campaigners used the second anniversary of the Paris agreement to call for more effort to encourage divestment from fossil fuels. They're claiming this move is "among the most significant divestment efforts in the world to date".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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