The US state of California sued five of the world's largest oil companies on Friday, alleging the firms caused billions of dollars in damages and misled the public by minimizing the risks from fossil fuels, according to a court filing.
The suit, dismissed by one defendant as "meritless" and "politicized," follows numerous other cases brought by US cities, counties and states against fossil fuel interests over the impact of climate change as well as alleged disinformation campaigns spanning decades.
The civil case was filed in superior court in San Francisco against ExxonMobil, Shell, BP, ConocoPhillips and Chevron, which is headquartered in California. The American Petroleum Institute (API), an industry group, is also a defendant in the case.
"Oil and gas company executives have known for decades that reliance on fossil fuels would cause these catastrophic results, but they suppressed that information from the public and policymakers by actively pushing out disinformation on the topic," the 135-page complaint read.
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