Environmentalists lose climate lawsuit over Arctic oil drilling

Posted: January 6, 2018 by oldbrew in climate, exploration, greenblob, Legal
Tags: ,

Norway’s Goliat oil platform [image credit: T3n60 @ Wikipedia]

Another attempt to use the law to get a court to take on the role of government over supposed climate issues bites the dust, assuming no appeal. The green groups were ordered to pay the state’s $94,000 legal costs.

Oslo District Court on Thursday ruled that Norway’s drilling for oil in the Barents Sea does not violate a constitutional right to a healthy environment, reports The Barents Observer.

The government acts in accordance with the law when awarding new petroleum exploration licenses for the Barents Sea, the ruling by Oslo District Court reads. Greenpeace, one of the three organizations which filed the lawsuit, has published the court’s 49-pages comprehensive ruling.

The lawsuit was challenging Norway’s 23rd oil licensing round arguing that opening up the Arctic continental shelf would violate the country’s Paris agreement commitments to limit temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has concluded that global warming of over two degrees Celsius compared with pre-industrial levels will lead to a high risk of triggering mass species extinction, widespread ecosystem collapse, and the destruction of the livelihoods of hundreds of millions of people.

Amended three years ago, the Norwegian Constitution’s Article 112 is aimed to ensure the State has an obligation to take measures guaranteeing the citizens’ rights to a secure climate, including for the descendants.

Summing up the case, the judges write that Article 112 in the Constitution provides a right that could mean a decision, like the one in question, could be made invalid.

«Whether Norway is doing enough for the environment and climate and if it was sensible to open fields so far north and east, are questions depending on composed assessments that are better assessed through political processes that the courts are not eligible to test,» the ruling says.

Continued here.

  1. One wonderful milestone.

  2. BoyfromTottenham says:

    Who in their right mind would believe that a country’s Constitution should or could “guarantee” any such thing? It might as well try to “guarantee” they all citizens will be healthy, smart and rich!

  3. Bitter@twisted says:

    Aren’t the Scandinavian populations getting less intelligent?
    I wonder why?