Shell's $1 Million Lawsuit Against Greenpeace Condemned By Greta Thunberg and Other Hollywood Celebrities

By Thea Felicity

Apr 01, 2024 01:12 PM EDT

Greenpeace activists hang a banner on July 24, 2014 in front of a Shell gas station in Santiago, Chile. The protest is against Shell's oil search in the Artic region, and also to demand that Lego remove Shell logos from their toys.
(Photo : MARTIN BERNETTI/AFP via Getty Images)

Climate activist, Greta Thunberg, Emma Thompson and Imelda Staunton have united to strongly condemn Shell's legal action against Greenpeace, which they perceive as being insensitive and retaliatory, as reported by The Guardian.

The lawsuit aims to claim $1 million in damages and was initiated after Greenpeace activists protested by occupying an oil platform. The first significant legal battle Greenpeace has faced in its 50-year existence. 

The activists involved in the protest boarded the platform north of the Canary Islands in January last year, wielding signs advocating an end to drilling activities and a transition towards renewable energy sources.

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In return, important figures from the music industry, law, and even Hollywood, as well as 100,000 public personalities, signed a letter to uphold the right to peaceful protest. It stresses the legitimacy of the demands articulated by the Greenpeace activists, urging Shell to channel its resources towards aiding communities disproportionately impacted by climate change instead.

Meanwhile-Philip Evans, a campaigner at Greenpeace UK, criticizes the UK government for granting oil giants like Shell new exploration and drilling licenses, which worsens the climate emergency. 

The letter, addressed to Shell's CEO Wael Sawan, has garnered support from civil society organizations like Amnesty International and Friends of the Earth. Notable signatories, including writer and chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, condemn Shell's legal pursuit as contradictory to its public commitments to environmental sustainability.

However, Shell maintains that while it respects the fundamental right to protest, such actions must be conducted safely and lawfully. The company argues that boarding a 72,000 metric-ton moving vessel at sea poses significant risks to both protesters and crew members. 

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