Groups claim that the oil giant has not done enough to tackle climate change
An alliance of 14 French local authorities and several NGOs will take unprecedented court action this week against the French oil firm Total to try to force the firm to drastically reduce its greenhouse gas emissions.
It is the first climate change litigation against a private company in France. Campaigners want the court to ensure Total does more to curb its emissions.
Total is on the list of top 20 global fossil fuel companies whose joint exploitation of the world’s oil, gas and coal reserves can be directly linked to more than a third of all greenhouse gas emissions in the modern era, according to analysis last year.
The towns and local authorities that have brought the case range from Bayonne, in the south-west, to La Possession, on Réunion island in the Indian Ocean, and Sevran, north of Paris. They argue that the climate emergency is already being felt by ordinary citizens and not enough is being done by large firms.