A federal judge in San Francisco has cleared the 24 August, a coalition of environmental organizations and US cities to bring charges against the US government. The plaintiffs - the NGOs Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth and the four cities of Oakland, Santa Monica, Arcata (California) and Boulder (Colorado) - Two federal agencies criticized American development - Overseas Private Investment Corp. and Export-Import Bank - finance oil and gas projects abroad having a negative effect on climate change.
"This is the first time the US justice allows citizens to sue for the damage caused by industrial projects that contribute to global warming," says the San Francisco Chronicle. The complaint, filed in 2002, request that the offending agencies, whose directors are appointed by the US president, "fund alternative energy development projects more respecteuses environment than fossil fuels," reports the daily.
According to the complaint, "the financing of oil and gas projects, including power plants, oil fields, oil and gas pipelines, amounted to 32 billion in ten years. But these projects are causing the release of more 2,1 billion tons of carbon dioxide and methane each year, about 8% of the global total and almost a third of US emissions. "