French NGOs Take BNP Paribas to Court in World’s First Climate Lawsuit Against a Commercial Bank

Friends of the Earth (Les Amis de la Terre) France, Notre Affaire à Tous and Oxfam France, who had given BNP Paribas formal notice to comply with its due diligence obligations on 26 October, sued BNP Paribas over its massive support to fossil fuels and for its substantial contribution to climate change.

The historic lawsuit is part of a global litigation movement that aims to hold the major funders of climate change accountable for their legal responsibilities.

According to the plaintiffs, BNP Paribas is the world’s largest funder of the eight European and North American oil and gas majors, which altogether are involved in more than 200 new fossil fuel projects around the world.

Several of these majors also face climate legal actions aiming to bring their activities into line with the objective to limit global warming to 1.5 ˚C.

Lorette Philippot, Campaigner at Friends of the Earth France said: “The urgent warning professed by the scientific community and the International Energy Agency has recently been reiterated through repeated statements from the United Nations: a bank cannot claim to be committed to net zero while supporting new oil and gas projects. But BNP Paribas, Europe’s largest funder of fossil fuel expansion, is ignoring scientific truths and is reluctant to address this glaring issue.”

BNP Paribas failed to meet the demands formally notified by the organisations on 26 October 2022, and the French bank will now have to face its accusers before the court.

#fossilfuel #oilandgas #climatecrisis

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