Filipino inquiry: Companies morally, legally guilty for climate change
Corporates have been obstructing the influence of climate science, rendering them responsible for climate disasters.
According to an inquiry put together by Filipino typhoon survivors, the world's most polluting companies have a moral and legal obligation to address the harms of climate change due to their role in spreading misinformation about the matter.
The report was published on Friday, and it asserts that mining, oil, coal, and cement firms engaged in "wilful obfuscation" of climate science, and blocked efforts towards efforts to switch to green energy.
The inquiry was published by the Philippines Commission on Human Rights, and it began 7 years ago - a long-awaited report that was sparked by a petition signed by survivors of the Haiyan Typhoon and local NGOs.
The report was based on the scientific, legal, and personal bases and evidence through the roles played by 47 companies of the world's most polluting companies.
Commission hearings in Manila, London, and New York heard survivors of extreme weather disasters, who appealed to companies to respect human rights.
The companies may also be held to account by their shareholders that have been investing in oil exploration, according to the report.
The executive director of Greenpeace Southeast Asia, Yeb Sano, called the report a "vindication" for the millions of citizens whose human rights were violated due to the irresponsibility of corporations that are behind the climate crisis.
“This report is historic and sets a solid legal basis for asserting that climate-destructive business activities by fossil fuel and cement companies contribute to human rights harms. The message is clear: these corporate behemoths cannot continue to transgress human rights and put profit before people and planet.”
The commission, however, does not have the authority to hold the companies legally accountable for their actions. Experts and academics hope the report will at least influence legislation and the development of new laws and lawsuits in the Philippines.