California Attorney General, Rob Bonta, has filed a civil lawsuit against five oil majors and the American Petroleum Institute (API), accusing them of deceptive practices and contributing to climate change-related harms. The lawsuit, filed in the San Francisco County Superior Court, targets ExxonMobil Corp., Shell Plc, Chevron Corp., ConocoPhillips Corp., and BP Plc.

According to California’s complaint, these companies were aware of the detrimental effects of burning fossil fuels on the planet’s climate as early as the 1960s. However, they allegedly downplayed or denied climate change in public statements and marketing efforts.

In response, California seeks several remedies from the lawsuit. Firstly, they aim to establish a fund that finances climate mitigation and adaptation initiatives to address the existing nuisance caused by these companies. Secondly, they request injunctive relief to safeguard California’s natural resources from pollution, impairment, and destruction. Additionally, the lawsuit aims to prevent the accused from making further false or misleading statements about the role of fossil fuel combustion in climate change. Finally, California seeks damages and penalties for the harms caused.

Under California law, a public nuisance refers to anything injurious to health that affects the public. In this case, the state accuses the oil majors of damaging natural resources, engaging in false advertising, and misleading environmental marketing practices among other charges.

The lawsuit also implicates API, the largest lobbying group representing the oil industry. Both API and the oil majors are alleged to have long-standing knowledge of the climate impacts associated with the use of fossil fuels.

Overall, California’s legal action signals a robust response against major oil companies and their misleading practices regarding climate change. The state aims to hold these corporations accountable for their actions and secure remedies that mitigate the damage caused.

API Receives Report on Environmental Pollutants

In 1968, the American Petroleum Institute (API) and its members received a report from the Stanford Research Institute regarding environmental pollutants, including carbon dioxide. The report, published 55 years ago, predicted that significant temperature changes were highly likely to occur by the year 2000.

API’s Commitment to Environmental Responsibility

API’s General Counsel, Ryan Meyers, emphasized the industry’s ability to provide affordable energy while simultaneously reducing emissions and minimizing its environmental impact. Over the past two decades, the industry has demonstrated its dedication to sustainable practices.

California’s Lawsuits Against Automakers and Oil Industry

California has been actively engaged in litigation against automakers and the oil industry, accusing them of violating environmental laws. Furthermore, the state has implemented Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards that surpass federal regulations. This has compelled car manufacturers to adopt stricter requirements nationwide due to California’s significant market influence.

California’s Efforts to Regulate Gasoline Profits

To address what it perceives as excessive profits made by gasoline refiners in the state, California has taken steps towards regulating these profits. The aim is to ensure fairness and control pricing within the industry.

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