The claim, which has the backing of institutional investors with over 12 million shares in the company, is said to be the first case in the world seeking to hold a board of directors liable for failure to properly prepare for the energy transition.
Environmental law firm ClientEarth, in its capacity as a shareholder, filed the lawsuit against the British oil major’s board at the high court of England and Wales.
It alleges 11 members of Shell’s board are mismanaging climate risk, breaching company law by failing to implement an energy transition strategy that aligns with the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement.
“The shift to a low-carbon economy is not just inevitable, it’s already happening. Yet the Board is persisting with a transition strategy that is fundamentally flawed, leaving the company seriously exposed to the risks that climate change poses to Shell’s future success — despite the Board’s legal duty to manage those risks,” Paul Benson, senior lawyer at ClientEarth, said in a statement.