VW sued by Greenpeace Germany over carbon emissions targets

Automotive Industry

Source: Automotive News Europe, 2021-11-09

Volkswagen Group is being sued by the Environmental Activist Clara Mayer and the Heads of Greenpeace Germany, the environmental group said on 9 November.

The activists claim VW is failing to do its part to combat climate change.

Before filing the suit, the claimants had given VW eight weeks to consider their demands, which include ending production of combustion-engine cars by 2030 and reducing carbon emissions by at least 65% from 2018 levels by then. 

VW did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The company had said that it did not view suing individual companies as an adequate solution for tackling a society-wide issue.

"Volkswagen already committed clearly to the Paris Climate Agreement in 2018 and has the most ambitious electrification strategy, investing €35bn in electromobility by 2025," a Spokesperson said in September when Greenpeace made its demands.

A similar lawsuit was filed in September by the German environmental organisation Deutsche Umwelthilfe against BMW and Daimler when both companies also rejected demands to end production of fossil fuel-based cars by 2030 and limit CO2 emissions before then.

The lawsuits draw on two prior climate-related cases: a German ruling in May 2020 that the country was failing to protect future generations from the consequences of climate change, and a Dutch ruling the same month ordering oil company Shell to reduce its emissions, the first time a private company was held responsible for its impact on the climate.

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