Dutch lawyer to get German prize for landmark climate cases

A lawyer who helped win cases forcing the Dutch government and oil giant Shell to cut carbon emissions, is to receive a 10,000-euro ($11,410) award in Germany

ByThe Associated Press
February 11, 2022, 8:03 AM
FILE - Dutch lawyer Roger Cox, right, proposes a toast on the steps of the court house in a scene setup by TV in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday, June 24, 2015. Roger Cox, a lawyer who helped win landmark cases forcing the Dutch government and oil
FILE - Dutch lawyer Roger Cox, right, proposes a toast on the steps of the court house in a scene setup by TV in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday, June 24, 2015. Roger Cox, a lawyer who helped win landmark cases forcing the Dutch government and oil giant Shell to cut carbon emissions, is to receiving a 10,000-euro ($11,410) award in Germany for contributing to global peace. Organizers of the Dresden Prize say Cox is being honored for “his groundbreaking contribution to fighting for compliance with global climate targets by means of law.” (AP Photo/Peter Dejong, File)
The Associated Press

BERLIN -- Roger Cox, a lawyer who helped win cases forcing the Dutch government and oil giant Shell to cut carbon emissions, is to receive a 10,000-euro ($11,410) award in Germany for contributing to global peace.

Organizers of the Dresden Prize said Cox was being honored for “his groundbreaking contribution to fighting for compliance with global climate targets by means of law.”

Past recipients of the prize include former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, American civil rights activist Tommie Smith and Kim Phuc, who became known as the “Napalm Girl” from an iconic 1972 Associated Press photo during the Vietnam War.

Acting for the Dutch arm of Friends of the Earth, Cox won a ruling against Shell last year that requires the energy giant to cut its carbon emissions by net 45% by 2030 compared to 2019 levels.

Climate activists hailed the decision as a victory for the planet that built on a 2015 case Cox brought requiring the Netherlands' government to cut emissions at least 25% by the end of 2020 from benchmark 1990 levels.

Since then, similar cases have been brought against governments and corporations around the world, with mixed results.

“Peace is more than the absence of war," the organizers of the Dresden Prize said. “Standing up for peace in times of climate crisis means acting responsibly and fighting for a humane and thus peaceful life for future generations.”

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