New York City is taking BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, and Royal Dutch Shell to court.
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Wednesday that the Big Apple is filing suit against the five major oil companies for climate change-related damages.
“We’re bringing the fight against climate change straight to the fossil fuel companies,” the mayor said in a statement. “As climate change continues to worsen, it’s up to the fossil fuel companies whose greed put us in this position to shoulder the cost of making New York safer and more resilient.”
A report by Climate Central ranks New York the American city most vulnerable to major coastal flooding and sea-level rise, putting 245,000 of its residents at risk. Another study predicts that by 2030, storms as intense as Hurricane Sandy — which cost more than 40 lives and caused $19 billion in damages — are likely to hit every five years.
New York will also divest $5 billion in fossil fuel investments from its pension funds, a move the city’s Public Advocate, Letitia James, has been pushing for months.
“Given the fact that by 2100 or sooner, many areas of our five boroughs where a lot of low-income residents live will experience chronic flooding, it’s really critically important that we step up and put our money where our mouths are,” James told Grist last month.