In 1859, in Cherry Tree Township, Pennsylvania USA, Edwin Drake drilled the first commercial oil well known to the world. That discovery and development augured unimagined advances in the standards of living of most of the Earth’s inhabitants. Industrial revolutions followed for the next 172 years. In May of 2021 on a world stage, a Dutch court ruled that Royal Dutch Shell, the progeny of Edwin Drake’s well, must reduce its carbon dioxide emissions beyond what is reasonable. This will deal a blow to the free world’s economy.

If the ruling is upheld after a certain appeal, one of the world’s largest energy company must reduce its CO2 emissions by 45% from its 2019 levels by the time New Year 2030 rolls around. But wait, wait there is more. The court ruled this to be so not just for its own production operations but for emissions from the products it produces. One might wonder if they made a candy bar that would include the CO2 one might exhale while eating the candy bar. Oh you think my analogy is not funny, too ridiculous. Well, is it any more ridiculous to tell an oil company producing a product meant to be burned for energy to not allow it to emit carbon dioxide. These people are insane or not insane if in fact their goal is to set life back in every productive way by more than a century of advances. If you are reading this essay in a room with furniture, carpet, a radio, TV, clothing, decorations, artwork, if this court and others to follow get their way most of these items will disappear. Nearly all or absolutely all are made with items that are derived from petroleum

This is the first time in memory that a court has ruled that a company must reduce it emissions in line with the Paris Climate Accord. The court ruled that Shell’s emissions pose “a serious threat” to Dutch residents and that the company has an “individual responsibility” to reduce emissions. Perhaps the Dutch do not own a submarine as if they did they would know that when submerged their CO2 content in the air will average 5000 parts per million.

The Accord signed by at least 190 of the UN’s member nations desires to limit the Earth to an increased temperature of 1.5 degrees centigrade in this century. Yet it admits the CO2 reductions it requires can not achieve it.

This verdict could pave the way for similar legal action to be taken in other countries against their leading petroleum production leaders. What we may be watching is an analogy to an old high school science experiment. Placing a live frog in a pot of warm water, ultimately intending to dissect it in the name of science. Initially the frog is quite comfortable in the water and remains so for a while as the water temperature is slowly raised. When it starts to feel uncomfortable it is usually too late. That will certainly be the case if courts around the world were able to enforce the dictates of the Paris Climate Accord.

Shell ended up in court as a result of a radical environmental group Friends of the Earth Netherlands filing suit against them. Actually one wonders why the suit was brought because Shell an Anglo-Dutch company had already stated that they planned to become a net-zero emission company by 2050 which included reducing its carbon emissions by 20% by 2030 and 45% by 2035.Of course they mean carbon dioxide as they emit no carbon (we call that soot). This proves they can not be considered one of the good guys. They are into appeasing the leftist progressives at every turn.

Further proof that they are in league with the left is that they defended itself by stating “We are investing billions of dollars in low carbon energy, including electric vehicle charging, hydrogen, renewables and biofuels”. All of which have been proven in the realm of real science not to have commercial energy potential. When will people for instance figure out that electric cars can not be fueled with wind and solar power and that in fact the latter can not exist without petroleum as a major ingredient in their production.

Earlier in the month the International Energy Agency took a big gulp of the radical Kool -Aid announcing that all oil and gas drilling must stop to avoid a climate catastrophe. Were that to occur it would not impact Climate what so ever but will surely enslave the world to government regulation and rationing of all energy available to humans anywhere on the globe. That is indeed the radical plan intended to creep up on mankind as the warm water does on the frog in the high school classroom.


  • Dr. Jay Lehr

    CFACT Senior Science Analyst Jay Lehr has authored more than 1,000 magazine and journal articles and 36 books. Jay’s new book A Hitchhikers Journey Through Climate Change written with Teri Ciccone is now available on Kindle and Amazon.