DHEC reports that SC has reduced COVID-19, resulting in an additional 40,000 vaccinations this week.

New York Times

A big setback pushes oil giants towards a “turning point”

Nun, environmental lawyer, pension fund executive, and the world’s largest asset management company. These were one of the rare collections of rebels who claimed a series of amazing victories against some of the world’s largest and most influential fossil fuel companies this week. From Houston to The Hague, the Netherlands, they fought at shareholders’ meetings and courts, accelerating efforts to force coal, oil and gas companies around the world to play a central role in the climate crisis, opening an astonishing front. And even with significantly different views, including corporate shareholders, children’s rights advocates, environmentalists, and thousands of Dutch citizens, they delivered a common underlying message. But now. Will Nichols, Head of Environmental Research at Maple Croft, a risk analysis company, said: “It’s a big chunk of society, and it doesn’t look good to oppose it all.” The most dramatic turning point to sign up for the morning newsletter from the New York Times is the Netherlands, and the courts are the largest in the world. Instructed Royal Dutch Shell, a private oil trader in the Netherlands and by far the largest company in the Netherlands itself: Over the last decade, greenhouse gas emissions from all global businesses need to be significantly reduced. This was the first time a court had ordered a private sector to, in effect, change its business practices for climatic reasons. Symbolism was inevitable. Famous for its landfills from the sea, the Netherlands faces an imminent threat from the warming climate caused by the burning of Shell’s own products, oil and gas. In another example of the week, at the annual shareholders’ meeting of ExxonMobil, America’s largest oil company, the message was clearly structured in terms of profits. A small new hedge fund has sparked an investor rebellion, diversifying from oil and gas. It hurt investors and profits. Chevron shareholders have resolved to instruct the company to significantly reduce emissions from customers who burn oil and gasoline as well as their own emissions. And in Australia, judges need to ensure that the proposed coal mine expansion, a project challenged by eight teenagers and an 86-year-old nun, does not harm the health of children in the country. I warned the government that it would be. Timing was important. This week, scientists also said that over the next five years, global average temperatures have soared at least temporarily above dangerous thresholds, rising above 1.5 degrees Celsius and 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit, more than before the Industrial Revolution. I concluded that it would be warm. Avoiding that threshold is the main purpose of the Paris Agreement, a groundbreaking global climate agreement between the countries of the world to combat climate change. Of course, none of these actions represent an imminent threat to the fossil fuel industry. For a century and a half, the world economy has been backed by oil and coal, but that doesn’t change anytime soon. Nonetheless, a ruling like the Netherlands could herald a similar legal attack on other fossil fuel companies and their investors, experts said. Oxford University economist Kate Raworth called Shell’s court defeat “a social turning point for a fossil-fuel-free future.” Shell said he would appeal the decision by the district court in The Hague, finding it “disappointing.” The process can take years to reach the Supreme Court of the country, not only delaying action, but also attracting ongoing public attention. But if the lower court’s ruling is valid, analysts need to turn the business in order for Shell to reduce oil in its portfolio and stop the growth of liquefied natural gas, where Shell is the industry leader. Said there is. Patrick Parentou, a professor at Law School in Vermont, said it was a concern for investors who have money on oil and gas reserves at companies like Shell. “The company decided that it had to get out of the oil business.” For cautious individuals in the financial world, it must raise serious concerns for them. Dangerous to Shell, the Dutch state judiciary in the past has shown to be at the forefront of climate proceedings. In 2019, the Supreme Court of the Netherlands ordered the government to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in a proceeding filed by environmental group Urgenda. It was the first time in the world to force governments to tackle climate change in support of human rights efforts. The case also began in the district court in The Hague before climbing the judicial ladder. The proceedings against Shell demonstrated the escalation of that strategy. After suing the government and winning, environmental advocates decided to take on one of the country’s most influential companies. The proceedings were filed in 2019 by Friends of the Earth’s Dutch branch, Mileue defensie, and 17,000 residents of Greenpeace and the Netherlands. Plaintiffs alleged that the company has a legal obligation to protect the Dutch people from the looming climate risks. The district court agreed. “The outcome of this proceeding against the fossil fuel industry will be systematic and immediate,” Tessa Khan, a lawyer who sued the government on behalf of Urgenda, said on Twitter. She predicted that it would spur other cases and “escalate risk perceptions among investors.” Shell had already begun to see the letters on the wall. Earlier this year, he said global oil demand peaked in 2019 and will slowly decline over the next few years. And Shell set relatively ambitious climate goals, at least compared to some of its American peers. We had already promised to reduce the carbon strength of our operations. This means that you can continue to expand oil and production, but reduce emissions from all barrels you produce. The district court on Wednesday instructed the company to reduce absolute emissions by 45% by 2030 compared to 2019 levels. This ruling applies to Shell’s global operations. But even if the appeal is upheld, for example, it could prove “unrealistic” for Shell to enforce it in Nigeria, the largest oil-producing country. Biraj Borkhataria, an analyst at RBC Capital Markets, said. bank. “But that’s another example of a society that demands more from oil companies,” he said separately in a note to customers on Thursday. Shell’s ruling is particularly noteworthy because private companies have been the targets of climate proceedings in the United States and elsewhere, but courts rarely rule against them. Dutch proceedings potentially open new fronts and encourage climate advocates to pursue more proceedings in more diverse countries, especially if domestic law enshrines the right to a clean environment. .. Several European and Latin American courts, including the Netherlands, interpret domestic law in this way. Peruvian farmers are suing German energy giants over the effects of global warming on their glaciers. Since 2017, about 20 US cities, counties and states have sued the fossil fuel industry for damages for the regional costs of climate change. The government is also at stake. The German Supreme Court recently ordered the government to tighten its climate goals because it has not reached a distance sufficient to reliably protect future generations. In the case of Australia, eight teens have appeared in court to prevent the government from expanding a huge coal mine called Whitehaven with the addition of nun Brigit Arthur. The court on Thursday stopped issuing an injunction to the mine, as plaintiffs requested. However, in order to order the government to “take reasonable care to avoid personal injury to children,” the government recognized climate change as an “intergenerational crime,” said the Sabin Climate Change Law Center at Columbia University. Secretary-General and lawyer representing some US cities and states suing fossil fuel companies. “The actions we take today regarding climate change entrust our children, our children’s children, and other future generations to a world that is fundamentally livable or not. You can, “he said. “The court acknowledges that.” The most notable proceedings in the United States, filed on behalf of young people against the US government, seek to establish a constitutional right to a healthy environment. After a recent setback in federal court, a federal judge ordered both parties to enter into a settlement debate. The action against Chevron and Exxon is noteworthy because it reveals to the extent that shareholders are quickly awakened to the risk of investment unless energy companies begin to dramatically change their business models. A significant proportion of shareholders have shown that companies are increasingly distrustful of achieving their expected financial performance without diversification from oil and gas. Exxon lost the fight against engine No. 1 a small new hedge fund this week, forcing large investors such as BlackRock and New York’s pension funds to change course. It was. The hedge fund has won at least two seats on Exxon’s 12-member board of directors. Tensie Whelan, director of NYU Stern Center for Sustainable Business, called this “a crucial moment for board accountability.” She said activist shareholders have traditionally taken on company executives on financial issues rather than social issues like climate change. “Shareholders are deeply concerned about the economic risks posed by climate change and are increasingly eager to hold the board accountable,” Welan said. This article was originally published in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company

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