If you haven’t heard of the Energy Charter Treaty, that should be no surprise. It’s a semi-secret international treaty which grants corporations in the energy sector enormous power to sue states at international investment tribunals for billions of dollars, for example, if a government decides to stop new oil or gas pipelines or to phase out coal. And boy are they using it. It was set up in the mid 90s and in the last decade alone there have been over 102 lawsuits filed, an increase of 437%. There’s about $28 billion worth of cases outstanding right now. It’s got to stop!
The cases can be used by fossil fuel investors for anything from challenging oil drilling bans, the rejection of pipelines and taxes on fossil fuels to crippling the phase-outs of controversial types of energy. It’s a nasty bit of work, which can penalise any attempt to reduce global carbon emission policies across the world. The good news is countries can opt out of the treaty any time, we just need to pressure them to do it. Sign this petition to start the process.