Dutch Fighting Climate Crisis

Reese Halter

A sweeping victory for Dutch environmental activists could have global repercussions as a court ordered the government on Wednesday to cut the Netherlands’ greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent by 2020.

Finally there’s some leadership in the global arena.

This momentous ruling by The Hague District Court lays the foundation for similar cases around the globe. This is a huge win for all the children of the Earth.

A group of 900 Dutch citizens represented by The Urgenda Foundation sought justice and got it. 

The Dutch court agreed with the climate activists that the government has a legal obligation to protect its people against the looming dangers of rising sea levels. Much of the low-lying country is below sea level and therefore highly vulnerable to rising levels caused by the climate crisis.

The activists successfully argued that unless rapid action was taken, conditions over the next 40 years could include extreme weather, shrinking ice caps and shortages of both food and water.

This precedent kicks the doors wide open to other nations that also have pending climate cases, including Belgium and the Philippines. This is the start of a wave of climate litigation.

Kudos to the Dutch who are also helping us protect the whales that are helping us fight the climate crisis with their flocculent fecal plums rich in iron and nitrogen that fertilizes the phytoplankton, which removes rising levels of carbon dioxide released from burning in excess of 96 million metric tons of fossil fuels daily.

This also sends a message to the whale-killing nation of Japan that the climate crisis must be tackled head-on and whales are central to the healing of our planet – amnesty for these important sentient giants.

Hooray for The Urgenda Foundation and the Dutch courts for protecting our planet!

Earth Dr. Reese Halter’s latest book is “Shepherding the Sea: The Race to Save our Oceans.”