Stop big polluters from suing our governments

To European governments, parliaments and EU institutions

Petition

Pull out of the Energy Charter Treaty and stop its expansion to other countries! The treaty allows coal, oil and gas corporations to obstruct the transition to a clean energy system. Disarm fossil fuel firms now, so they can no longer impede urgent climate action!

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Why is this important?

We’re paying massive fines to fossil fuel companies. Europeans could end up paying over 7 billion euro to oil, gas and coal companies for taking climate action. [1]

  • Oil and gas company Rockhopper is demanding 260 million euro from the Italians for banning new oil fields on its coast. 
  • Ascent wants 120 million from Slovenian taxpayers for prioritising the environment over gas fracking. 
  • Vattenfall sued the German people for €4.3 billion when it decided to phase out nuclear power.
  • And the Dutch people are set to pay 2.4 billion euros to RWE and Uniper for phasing out coal! [2]

The time to avoid a climate catastrophe is quickly running out. [2] But fossil fuel companies are holding our governments hostage through the threat of being sued for extortionate fines. They are blocking our governments from making the decisions we need to save our climate.

This toxic fossil fuel treaty - officially called the Energy Charter Treaty -  is a blast from the past, from a period when governments were in climate denial. [4] Yet, fossil fuel companies are clinging to it for dear life because it means they can protect their profits.  

But protecting profits means suing governments who dare put people and planet first. When they win, governments have to pay compensation with our public money. Public money that could go to green investments, education and hospitals instead of continuing to line the pockets of the biggest polluters. 

But we are gaining ground from the big polluters. Italy has already ended its membership of this toxic treaty, European Parliamentarians support our call and now it is up to our countries to choose a side. But for this to happen, our energy ministers need to hear our personal messages on why we care.

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References:

  1. Oil and gas company Rockhopper is demanding 260 million euro from the Italians for banning new oil fields on its coast. Ascent wants 120 million from Slovenian taxpayers for prioritising the environment over gas fracking. Vattenfall sued the German people for €4.3 billion when it decided to phase out nuclear. And the Dutch people are set to pay 2.4 billion euros to RWE and Uniper for phasing out coal!
    https://energy-charter-dirty-secrets.org/#section5
    https://friendsoftheearth.eu/press-release/uk-fracking-company-sues-slovenia-over-environmental-protection/
    https://www.investigate-europe.eu/en/2021/ect/
    https://www.euractiv.com/section/energy/news/energy-charter-treaty-strikes-again-as-uniper-sues-netherlands-over-coal-phase-out/
    https://www.euractiv.com/section/energy/news/germanys-rwe-uses-energy-charter-treaty-to-challenge-dutch-coal-phase-out/
  2. https://energy-charter-dirty-secrets.org/#section5
  3. This toxic fossil fuel treaty is called the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) https://friendsoftheearth.eu/news/how-the-energy-charter-treaty-derails-climate-action/
  4. https://act.wemove.eu/campaigns/stop-big-pollutors
  5. https://foeeurope.org/sites/default/files/climate_justice/2020/ect_axe_to_climate_action.pdf

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