The Dutch branch of Friends of the Earth (also known as Milieudefensie) is giving 29 large companies, including Ahold Delhaize, FrieslandCampina and Unilever, three months to present a well-developed and viable climate plan. If they fail to do so, the Dutch climate organisation threatens with lawsuits.
Setting an example
The organisation wants everyone to do their part in the fight against climate change, but believes that the biggest polluters should take the first step. "That is why we are starting a campaign to call on them to come up with climate plans", director Donald Pols told the Dutch public broadcaster NOS.
The Dutch climate organisation has written to 29 large companies: alongside 'obvious polluters' such as steel, oil and gas companies, they also include three food concerns - Unilever, Ahold Delhaize and FrieslandCampina. The organisation wants them all to draft a climate plan that illustrates how they will reduce their carbon emissions by at least 45 % by 2030.
Since signing the first climate treaty thirty years ago, the biggest polluters have made insufficient efforts to reduce their emissions, Pols argues. "Therefore, it is now time for more drastic action."
Recently, Milieudefensie won a similar court case against Shell. The judge in The Hague ruled that the oil giant must reduce its carbon emissions significantly in the short term.
The organisation now wants to build on that victory and wants to present the 29 climate plans to climate scientists within the next three months. The organisation has offered to assist the companies in drawing up their plans if they so wish. If their appeal remains unanswered, the organisation does not rule out further legal action.