The effects of climate change in most parts of the world are becoming drastic and thus, affecting lives and properties. Due to the present change in the climate, Paris has been experiencing its detrimental effects and on Tuesday, the city has said it is making out plans to sue the fossil industry. As a result of damages from climate change, Paris has also responded to these destructions, including immense recent floods, and it has decided to take this action to follow suit in the footsteps of New York and other cities in the United States.
It is necessary to know that 3 years ago, Paris had made plans to dissociate itself from assisting the fossil industry in the build-up to COP21, where the city itself agreed to sign the Paris Agreement. However, the Paris council has aims to use its power, together with the authority of President Anne Hidalgo within the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group to persuade other big cities to join in the campaign.
Earlier this month, Paris was a victim of a major disaster pertaining to floods, which according to Anne Hidalgo, poses “a clear question of the city’s adaptation to climate change”. With the advent of the downpours that flooded Paris in May 2016, various research has indicated that climate change doubled the advent of the floods. However, it is important to know that during the course of these floods in 2016, various lives and properties were lost.
Following the announcement on Tuesday by the city, it was also indicated that other cities that have been affected by climate change are following the same action as Paris. However, Clemence Dubois, of 350.org France stated: “it is a welcomed news that other cities such as New York and Paris are mobilizing to shield their residents from climate change and hold various fossil fuel industries accountable for their actions. This major action for the movement against fossil fuel companies and the support of thousands of people all over the world against climate change is a good one in order to protect the planet from being destroyed completely”.
We need to know that big fossil fuel companies like Total, Shell, BP, and Exxon are imposing a big threat to the world by causing floods and increasing the number of heat waves which are intensifying not only in Paris but other areas of the planet. Other detrimental effects caused by these big fossil fuel companies include droughts, forest fires, rising sea levels, etc. The movement will not only help France but other areas of the world.
In addition, on Jan. 10, the mayor of New York, Bill de Blasio, declared that New York would dissociate from investing on the fossil fuel pension funds of $ 191 billion and he also stepped further to state that the city is making plans to sue BP, Shell, ExxonMobil, Chevron, and ConocoPhillips.
Bill de Blasio has also made this known: “We want to commence the fight against climate change by tackling big fossil fuel companies that know how dangerous their activities are but go ahead to mislead the public to protect their personal interests. As climate change tends to aggravate, it is left for these fossil fuel companies whose interest in their profits puts us in this situation to take it upon themselves to make New York a safer place to be”.
Various court documents have stated that New York has also suffered from flooding and erosion as a result of climate changes. As a result of future threats, it has also sought to protect its residents from the effects of climate change back on the companies that have done lots of activities in creating changes on our climate – the fossil fuel companies.
Paris and New York are collaborating in the fight against fossil fuel giants due to Tuesday’s statement. Other major cities like Sydney, Cape Town, Berlin, Oslo, Copenhagen, and Stockholm are not left out in their support and they have also stated their commitment to the divestment of fossil fuels. Could this be the beginning of the movement against big fossil fuel giants by major cities in the world?
Nevertheless, 33 major local authorities in France have stated their support in the divestment; such authorities include, Bordeaux, Lille, La Rochelle, and Dijon.
Clemence Dubois said: “we will persuade our local authorities to ask other cities to follow our movement. We all know that our local communities have more authority in the resistance against these big fossil fuel companies, comprising through their links with the “Caisse des Depots et Consignation” who manages the pension of the employees. We also request that this public financial institution joins this movement that is happening all over the country.”
With all of these actions, the pressure on the fossil fuel industry is increasing every day. Right now, over 800 institutions including religious and medical groups have given their support to this movements. In order to increase the chances of victory, the Fossil Fuel movement is also making out plans for local action all over the world to increase the change to renewable energy. To be part of this movement- find out how you can take action anywhere you are.