Texts on Climate Class Action, by Paolo Cirio. 2023
Press material
- Press Release, January 31st, 2023
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- Website: ClimateClassAction.com
- Website: Flooding-NYC-Claims.net

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- Research historical evidence
- Research New York on flooding
- Works of the Climate Tribunal

- Publication Climate Tribunal, printed copy in Print on Demand or downloadable in PDF.

Related shows

- Climate Mismatch, Venice, 2023
- Natural Sovereignty, Capri, 2021

Related artworks
- Climate Tribunal
- Climate Class Action
- Climate Evidence
- Climate Culpable
- Extinction Claims

Related texts
- Climate Tribunal artist's book, 2024
- Climate Aesthetics, artist's essay, 2023
- Climate Mismatch, artist's text, 2023
- Climate Class Action, artist's text, 2023
- Flooding NYC Claims, artist's text, 2023
- Climate Tribunal, artist's text, 2021
- Natural Sovereignty, artist's text, 2021
- Extinction Claims, artist's text, 2021
- Regulatory Art, manifesto artist's text, 2019
- Climate Change Fighters, artist's text, 2010

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Paolo Cirio compiled a list of accusations against fossil fuel firms by researching news articles, publications, documentaries, legal cases, and conversing with journalists, economists, and activists. These accusations are popularized through the Climate Tribunal series.

Fossil fuel companies owe billions of dollars to citizens whose lives and belongings have been damaged or lost forever. ClimateClassAction.com wants to provide an unbiased and non-partisan service to citizens by allowing them to know their rights, to organize class action suits, and simulate claims for their personal damages. Despite the ongoing surge of climate-related lawsuits globally, there still hasn’t been a class action dedicated to all citizens.

For decades, fossil fuel companies have known about the consequences of their carbon emissions. However, they misinformed the public while making staggering profit, and destroying any opportunities for greener energy. These firms are directly responsible for climate disasters, and the damages they inflict on the personal life of citizens.


A list of accusations, evidence, legal case studies, and news articles has been compiled for the Climate Class Action project.

Soaring greenhouse gas emissions have resulted in, and will continue to result in, a significant increase in the number and severity of extreme weather events, including floods and landslides, hurricanes and coastal erosion, heatwaves and drought, wildfires and increased air pollution, and exacerbation of the spread of infectious diseases. These events also trigger economic inflation, hunger, mass migration, civil wars, and mass mortality.



Major fossil fuel companies have been aware of the consequences of greenhouse emissions for more than half a century. Scientists have been warning governments about global warming due to the burning of fossil fuels and its consequences for society since the 1960s. Companies like Exxon and Shell internally commissioned studies in the early 1980s that assessed the effects of their greenhouse gas emissions. These studies already precisely established that the emissions from their products would generate a surge in global temperatures causing hurricanes, sea level rise, drought, floods, wildfires and many other climate calamities; they even predicted mass migrations and social unrest resulting from global warming. The documents of these scientific studies commissioned by the fossil fuel firms remained secret for decades, as they failed to disclose material facts intentionally, knowingly, and recklessly.

The fossil fuel industry has perpetrated a multi-decade, multi-billion dollar disinformation, propaganda, and lobbying campaign to delay climate action by deceiving the public and policymakers about the climate crisis and its solutions. This has involved a remarkable number of advertisements in which fossil fuel firms have run climate denial messages on television, newspapers, and the Internet. After having denied the existence of climate change and their role in causing it, they kept spreading misleading advertising by promoting fossil fuels as integral to “climate solutions” without disclosing that fossil fuels are in fact the primary cause of climate change. In waging these deceptive advertising campaigns, fossil fuel firms are intentionally depriving consumers of information that is key to their purchase decisions.

The economic damage of the climate crisis is skyrocketing. In 2022 alone, extreme weather caused 18 disasters costing the U.S. $165 billion. However these figures don’t consider real estate losses, the disruption of supply chains, and increased scarcity of resources, including water. Besides personal harm, there are business damages that affect a variety of industries and related services, resulting in rising inflation, while huge losses are generated by ruining real estate, properties, infrastructures, and equipment. The whole world economy is at risk, while the fossil fuel firms make staggering profits, sheltering them in tax havens and in countries less affected by climate change. The economic damage caused by fossil fuel firms will impact everyone - while the governments and citizens pay losses, the gains are not taxed and reinvested in mitigation and adaptation.

For decades the fossil fuel firms haven’t innovated their technology to emit less greenhouse emissions, even though they were well aware of their consequences, nor have they developed new renewable energy production. Instead they have engaged in price fixing to speculate on fossil fuel supply by forming cartels and controlling business and trade organizations like OPEC. They have marketed themselves as clean innovative companies with the goal of attracting new consumers to their fossil fuel products, while blocking cleaner alternatives that contribute substantially less to climate change. The majority of their investments is in extracting and producing fossil fuels, as they monopolize the energy industry by acquiring patents, technologies, and projects for renewable energy alternatives just to keep them out of the market and not developing them, as it would be less profitable.

The largest oil and gas companies and their top industry trade associations have systematically and intentionally misled consumers about the central role their products play in the climate crisis. Moreover, they mislead consumers with green-washing advertisements designed to represent their companies as environmentally responsible, focused on developing green technology and products, while in reality their investment in clean energy sources is minuscule, and their business models continue to center on the fossil fuel products driving climate change. They have nevertheless engaged in a coordinated, multi-front effort to conceal and deny their own knowledge of the damage they cause, discredit the growing body of publicly available scientific evidence, and persistently create doubt in the minds of customers, consumers, regulators, the media, journalists, teachers, and the public about the reality and consequences of the impact of their fossil fuel pollution. Their deception is effective, as fossil fuel companies are making massive profits, which in turn has enabled the unabated and expanded extraction, production, marketing, and sale of fossil fuels.

The fossil fuel industry has misled investors by presenting false and misleading assurances that it effectively manages economic risks posed to its business by climate change regulations, lawsuits, and consequent fines and legal costs. Moreover, they misled investors about the risk of ‘stranded assets’ of fossil fuels reserves, and how the whole fossil fuel industry might collapse in favor of demand for more renewable energy. These potential massive losses in revenues and share value can affect investors. Shareholders include pension funds, municipalities, states, and other public stakeholders, which might be affected by mass losses because of the misleading financial projections by the fossil fuel industry. Misrepresentations and omissions of real, tangible facts as described here constitute actual fraud. Investors might suffer damages in connection with purchasing and retaining financial derivatives that were the direct and proximate result of fossil fuel firms’ fraud.

Instead of helping to clean up and compensate those affected by their products, the fossil fuel firms deny their accountability, aggressively avoiding their responsibility in fixing and paying for the damages caused by their products. They fight legal litigations that would make them pay and don’t have insurance that would cover the damages caused. They fight carbon taxes that create revenues to repair, help, and compensate for the losses and damage they cause. Lately fossil fuel firms are initiating projects for decarbonization and carbon capture of their products by asking for public investment from governments at taxpayers’ expense. Yet, these technologies for decarbonization and greenhouse gas capture are not efficient, and they shouldn’t be economically exploited by the same companies that have interest in lowering the cost of production of the same emissions they generate.

Fossil fuel companies have lobbied to avoid regulation of their emissions and industries. During political elections, they fund parties and politicians who are against regulating or taxing greenhouse emissions, while corrupting politicians around the world to get permits and licenses to find and extract fossil fuels. They lobby even inside the same institutions dedicated to tackling climate change; in fact the fossil fuel firms were not questioned or even mentioned by the World Bank nor the IMF, international climate agreements, nor by anyone over the course of decades of negotiations and policymaking during UN and COP conferences. This corruption reached its disgraceful apex in 2023, with the presidency of COP being held by an oil company executive.

The 100 major oil, gas, and coal producers have generated over 70% of greenhouse gas emissions, making them the greatest threat to citizens and society as whole. The historical study “Carbon Major Database” by the Climate Accountability Institute determined precise responsibilities each international fossil fuel firm has. The cumulative greenhouse emissions by the major fossil fuel firms in the United States, Europe, and United Kingdom are approximately 20% of the total emitted worldwide. China accounts for 17%, Russia 9%, and the Middle East 14%. These statistics prove that companies from the U.S., U.K., and E.U. maintain a great amount of responsibility for having triggered the climate crisis. Furthermore, the trade of fossil fuel has been driven by western countries, which acquired licenses to extract fossil fuel or buy it from foreign countries. Therefore, despite the origin of extraction, the greater amount of emissions comes from the production and consumption of fossil fuels by western countries. For instance, the United States has emitted a quarter of the total world greenhouse gasses, more than any other country.

The oil sector alone made astounding profits at the dizzying rate of $3 Billion-a-Day for many decades. Meanwhile, the fossil fuel industry receives public subsidies of $11 Million-a-Minute and often billions in tax breaks or isn’t taxed at all. In addition, the biggest banks in the world have provided billions to the oil, gas, and coal firms as investment in new extraction of fossil fuel. Recently, in 2022, fossil fuel firms made record profits. ExxonMobil reported record $20 billion quarterly profit, and Shell posted almost $10 billion, and yet they are still investing more money in new fossil fuel extraction, despite net zero pledges.


The Climate Class Action project is based on factual events, scientific data and research, as well as concrete legal cases. In the following links you can find all necessary information to support a Climate Class Action with evidence and accusations against fossil fuel companies.

Background Facts and Data:

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