Counties to the north and south of San Francisco have filed an official complaint with the California Superior Court in response to rising sea levels. Marin and San Mateo Counties, in collaboration with the city of Imperial Beach, have asked the court to hold 37 oil, gas and coal companies accountable for rising sea levels, which are causing environmental harm and taking a toll on taxpayers. According to the plaintiffs, the companies are aware of the damage their fossil fuel products are inflicting on the environment. In addition, they argue, the defendants have sought to hide their activities.
Many of the defendants named are major oil corporations: Exxon Mobil, Chevron, Shell and Conoco Phillips are all listed. The 37 companies listed are responsible for around 20 percent of all industrial carbon dioxide and methane pollution released in the past fifty years.
“Instead of working to reduce the use and combustion of fossil fuel products, lower the rate of greenhouse gas emissions, minimize the damage associated with continued high use and combustion of such products, and ease the transition to a lower carbon economy, Defendants concealed the dangers, sought to undermine public support for greenhouse gas regulation, and engaged in massive campaigns to promote the ever-increasing use of their products at ever greater volumes,” states the complaint, which was filed with the California Superior Court on Monday.
The formal complaint comes after a particularly wet winter, which resulted in extensive landslides, flooding, destroyed roads and downed power lines. Marin County was one of the recipients of Federal Emergency Management Agency funding in January, to…
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