Timeline climate case Shell

In 2018 Milieudefensie decided to sue Shell. Here you will find the timeline of our Climate Case.


4th of april 2018

Milieudefensie sends a letter to Shell, asking the company to stop causing climate change.

Letter to Shell

15th of May 2018: 10,000 co-plaintiffs

10,000 people in the Netherlands become co-plaintiffs.

28th of May 2018: Reaction Shell

Shell states in a letter that it will not respond to Milieudefensie's demands. Shell doesn't find the demands justified.

12th of February 2019: 6 organisations join the Climate Case against Shell

On February 12, Milieudefensie sends another letter to Shell. This second letter contains the message that the organisations ActionAid, BothEnds, Fossielvrij NL, Jongeren Milieu Actief (now Milieudefensie Jong), de Waddenvereniging and Greenpeace have joined the Climate Case against Shell.

24th of March: more than 17,000 co-plaintiffs:

Deadline for joining the Climate Case. On the 25th of March, the counter is up to 17,000 co-plaintiffs.

5th of April 2019: Handing over the summons

On this date, Milieudefensie hands over the summons to Shell in The Hague, on behalf of 17,379 co-plaintiffs and 6 organizations.

17th of April 2019: Shell appears in court

Shell has been summoned to report to the court on April 17. Shell has 3 months to respond to the contents of the summons. 

December 2020

The hearing days are scheduled for December 1st, 3rd, 15th, and 17th. Usually, the verdict follows a few months after the hearings.

May 26th: Milieudefensie wins!

Milieudefensie wins the Climate Case against Shell. Shell has to reduce its CO2 emissions by 45% in 2030, compared to 2019.


20th of July 2021: Shell appeals the verdict

Shell announces to appeal the verdict, claiming it would be ineffective to legally force only 1 company to reduce its emissions. This announcement doesn´t change the fact that Shell has to carry out the verdict with immediate effect.

22th of March 2022

Shell hands in its ground for appeal.

25th of April 2022

It appears Shell hasn't done much to carry out the verdict in the Climate Case. To increase the pressure on Shell, Milieudefensie sends another letter to the board. In this letter, Milieudefensie points out their personal liability if Shell ignores the verdict and continues to threaten human lives worldwide.

18th of October 2022

Milieudefensie, together with 6 organisations, hand in their statement of defence on appeal to the Court. In this document, which counts no less than 250 pages, Milieudefensie reacts to Shell's grounds for appeal and explains why Shell has to stop causing dangerous climate change.

April 2024

The appeal hearings will take place on the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and the 12th of April 2024. We expect the verdict some 5 months later.