February 26, 2008
U.S. District Court, District of Northern California
Type of Case:
Civil and Human Rights
Exxon Mobil, BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips Company
A tiny and impoverished Alaskan village of Inupiat Eskimos is taking action against some of the world's largest greenhouse gas offenders, claiming contributions to global warming are leading to the destruction of their village and causing erosion to the land that will eventually put the entire community under water.
Hagens Berman, along with five law firms and two non-profit legal organizations, filed a lawsuit against industrial corporations that emit large quantities of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. The lawsuit calls out nine oil companies, 14 electric power companies and one coal company as named defendants.
The lawsuit claims the defendants' actions are resulting in the destruction of protective ice, exposing the village to severe fall and winter storms that destroy the ground the village stands on.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers estimates that relocating the village of Kivalina, population of 400, could cost between $95 and $400 million - an expense the community cannot afford.