Citizens Can Use Whistleblower Laws to Report Climate Crimes
It’s no secret that climate change is happening at an increasingly rapid pace. Greenhouse gas emissions continue to increase, sea levels are rising and once-normal weather events are more destructive than ever. While the average citizen can cut down on their carbon footprint, certain industries and corporations are adding to the problem.
The Climate Corruption Campaign
The Climate Corruption Campaign was launched in 2020 by the National Whistleblower Center. The campaign’s goal is to root out “major corporations and large financial institutions [who] are significantly exposed to climate risks,” yet are “not moving toward net-zero financing at the pace or scale necessary to avoid destabilizing the climate or the economy.”
The CCC works to find corporations and financial institutions who hide the extent of their climate-related financial risks, or those who mislead others about their sustainability measures. While the National Whistleblower Center wants financial regulators to create mandatory climate-related disclosure requirements for companies and financial institutions, whistleblowers can act now.
Ecosystem Marketplace notes that a “significant share of global greenhouse gas emissions results from, or is associated with, conduct that violates existing criminal law.” This includes deforestation and forest degradation. For example, 90 percent of logging in key tropical countries is illegal, and involves criminal activity. Furthermore, “[e]ven when emissions are not directly based on criminal conduct, they may be associated with crimes—such as corruption, trade violations, financial crimes or fraud— committed…in the context of extracting or trading fossil fuels or timber.” Furthermore, if there is a “concrete causal link between a specific source of emissions and a harmful consequence,” like property destruction, serious bodily injury or harm to physical health, those can be considered climate crimes, too.
If you know of a company or financial institution committing climate crimes, consider filing a whistleblower lawsuit—it might just help save the planet.
To learn more about climate-related whistleblower lawsuits and find out whether you have a claim, contact an experienced whistleblower attorney at Kardell Law Group today.