New documents released online and published by a Dutch news website reveal that, like ExxonMobil Corp., Shell Oil also knew the truth about global warming at least 30 years ago, but continued to dig up and sell more oil and gas anyway.
The documents, posted online at the Climate Files website and the Climate Investigations Center, show that Shell researchers were remarkably prescient about how global warming would play out, and the eventual legal ramifications for oil companies given the warnings.
Remarkably, one of the Shell reports – published in 1998 – gamed out a scenario in which, in the year 2010, "...Violent storms causes extensive damage to the eastern coast of the U.S."
The report was off by just two years.
This scenario essentially projected Superstorm Sandy, which occurred in 2012 and devastated the New Jersey shore while also putting lower Manhattan under water. That storm helped prompt a new wave of climate activism in the U.S. that has continued to build.
The 1998 report envisioned class action lawsuits filed after these storms against the government and fossil fuel companies, because these entities ignored what scientists "(including their own) have been saying for years: that something must be done."
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