EU tries to stop fossil fuel companies suing states over climate action

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The EU is trying to remove fossil fuels from the list of investments protected by the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) in order to stop its member states being sued over climate action.

Similar cases could cost taxpayers across the world up to €1.3 trillion ($1.5tn) by 2050, according to the Open Exp think tank, based on the value of fossil fuel assets protected by the treaty. Just under half of these costs would fall on the EU.

The EU has been pushing for green reform of the treaty but all 53 ECT countries need to be on board for changes to be made and Japan and Central Asian countries have blocked reforms.

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