May 28, 2021
The Dutch District Court in The Hague has ordered Royal Dutch Shell (RDS) to “reduce the emissions of the Shell group, its suppliers and its customers by net 45%, as compared to 2019 levels, by the end of 2030, through the corporate policy of the Shell group”. The ruling in the ‘climate case’ corresponds to the claim of Friends of the Earth Netherlands, together with other civil society organizations and over 17,000 co-plaintiffs .
RDS also recognizes that immediate action is needed to stop climate change, but at a much slower pace than what environmental organizations are demanding . Although the Dutch court acknowledges that RDS enhanced its policy, it founds it insufficiently concrete .
RDS was told that it has a duty of care and that its level of CO₂ reduction, as well as that of the whole supply chain, should be brought into line with the Paris Agreement . The judges want RDS to start immediately with a policy that matches the required reduction. An expected appeal against the verdict should not be a reason for the company to postpone the reduction policy .
This historic ruling is a resounding victory for Friends of the Earth Netherlands and means that Shell may have to refrain from new investments in oil. It is the second time a Dutch judge has issued a groundbreaking ruling in a climate case . Additional information about climate justice, and related court cases against RDS can be found in the article Climate Justice as a Human Right – GreenMarked.
 De Rechtspraak. (2021, 26 May). Royal Dutch Shell must reduce CO2 emissions. Retrieved 26 May 2021, from Royal Dutch Shell must reduce CO2 emissions (rechtspraak.nl)
 Van de Weijer, B. (2021, 26 May). Historische uitspraak in klimaatzaak: Shell moet CO2-uitstoot drastisch verminderen. Retrieved 26 May 2021, from Historische uitspraak in klimaatzaak: Shell moet CO2-uitstoot drastisch verminderen | De Volkskrant
 Luttikhuis, P. (2021, 26 May). Shell moet van rechter CO2-uitstoot snel verminderen. Retrieved 26 May 2021, from Shell moet van rechter CO2-uitstoot snel verminderen – NRC