Tuesday, July 18, 2017

California Communities Facing Rising Sea Level Sue Big Oil Companies For Damage Done

[Shadow Proof] Two counties in California, Marin and San Mateo Counties, as well as the city of Imperial Beach, sued 37 fossil fuel corporations for damage they claim the companies allegedly knew would occur as a result of their contribution to rising sea level and global warming.
“Major corporate members of the fossil fuel industry have known for nearly a half century that unrestricted production and use of their fossil fuel products create greenhouse gas pollution that warms the planet and changes our climate,” the lawsuits assert. “They have known for decades that those impacts could be catastrophic and that only a narrow window existed to take action before the consequences would not be reversible.”
Nevertheless, according to the lawsuit, fossil fuel corporations “engaged in a coordinated, multi-front effort to conceal and deny their own knowledge of those threats, discredit the growing body of publicly available scientific evidence, and persistently create doubt in the minds of customers, consumers, regulators, the media, journalists, teachers, and the public about the reality and consequences of the impacts of their fossil fuel pollution.”
The lawsuits seek “compensatory damages,” relief for the “nuisances” described in the complaint, “punitive damages,” and the “disgorgement” or giving up of profits.
San Francisco Bay Area and San Mateo County, the San Mateo lawsuit states, are “particularly vulnerable to sea level rise and changes in salinity, temperature, and runoff.” San Mateo’s “topography, geography, and land use patterns make it particularly susceptible to injuries from sea level rise.”
“Because the California coast south of Cape Mendocino, including San Mateo, is projected, due to its geophysical characteristics, to experience a higher rate of sea level rise and a greater absolute amount of sea level rise” than the global average. Read More