Criminal case lodged against TotalEnergies for their decisions that contributed to climate change

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  • A complaint was filed with the Paris judicial court in France on Tuesday 21 May 2024 which targets the Board of Directors of French oil and gas company TotalEnergies, its Chairman and CEO Patrick Pouyanné and its shareholders.
  • These include the American asset manager BlackRock and the Norges Bank.

On May 21, 2024, the NGOs BLOOM, Alliance Santé Planétaire, Nuestro Futuro, and eight individuals filed a criminal complaint in Paris Criminal Court against the board of directors and main shareholders of TotalEnergies. According to the plaintiffs’ press release, the complaint alleges that the board of directors and main shareholders should be held criminally liable for their decisions that contributed to climate change, which they took despite knowing they would cause significant casualties and environmental damage. Alleged offences include deliberately endangering the lives of others, involuntary manslaughter, neglecting to address a disaster, and damaging biodiversity. According to the press release, the public prosecutor has discretion to decide whether to dismiss the case or open a judicial investigation.

Bloom says the aim of such an initiative is “to put a definitive stop to the expansion of fossil fuel extraction, which is leading to an unprecedented situation: ‘globocide’, i.e. the irreversible disruption of the Earth System and the biosphere as a whole”.

TotalEnergies continues to open fossil fuel wells on the African continent which includes a disastrous venture in Cabo Delgado, Mozambique. Read more

“We are determined to stop the climate criminals. It has quite simply become a matter of life and death”, says Claire Nouvian, founder and director of Bloom. The NGO also warns that “if no action is taken by the public prosecutor within the next three months, the complainants have the option of filing a civil action and referring the matter to an examining magistrate to request the opening of a judicial investigation”.

TotalEnergies’ made profits of more than 19 billion euros in 2023, the highest in its history.

Link to the full details of the case HERE

Author: Bryan Groenendaal


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