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Article

Latin America: Guyana case demonstrates growth of climate litigation against governments and companies in resource-rich countries

"Climate lawsuits snowball as South Americans seek a healthy environment" -May 31st, 2021-

...A landmark lawsuit filed against Guyana’s government, arguing that oil production fuels climate change, could bolster legal action as court cases involving energy companies and state authorities surge, according to lawyers and environmentalists...The constitutional claim - the first of its kind in the English-speaking Caribbean - asserts that oil exploration and production led by U.S. oil major ExxonMobil off the South American country’s coast is unconstitutional, said the case’s lead lawyer Melinda Janki...The oil consortium led by ExxonMobil, which includes partners Hess Corp and the Chinese National Offshore Oil Corp (CNOOC-Nexen), has so far made 18 discoveries, containing about 9 billion barrels of recoverable oil and gas, in Guyana’s Stabroek block, one of the world’s largest reserves...An ExxonMobil spokesman said by email that the company in Guyana complies “with all applicable laws at every step of the exploration, appraisal, development and production stages”...Fossil fuel companies face growing pressure as activists go to court to hold businesses and governments accountable for the climate change impacts of their operations...While climate cases in Latin America have so far mainly focused on holding governments to account, one Peruvian farmer has taken on German utility company RWE...