Skip directly to content

Environmental Disaster

Nigerian Farmers Sue Shell Oil in Dutch Court

In a case that could set a legal precedent for holding multinational corporationsible for their overseas operations, Friends of the Earth Netherlands, her Nigerian sister organisation ERA and four Nigerian farmers and fishermen asked the civil court in the Hague to hold Shell Oil financially responsible for a major oil spill in the Niger Delta which damaged fish ponds, orchards, forests and farmland in three villages in the Niger Delta in 2005.  The plaintiffs argue that the spill was caused by the oil company's corroded underground pipelines, and that Shell has a responsibility to adhere to international environmental standards rather than national or local standards, to prevent oil spills from occuring in the countries where Shell operates.