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Norway's government wins Arctic oil lawsuit

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Staff Writer | January 5, 2018
Arctic oil
Oil exploration   An Oslo court approved plans

An Oslo court approved Norway's plans for more oil exploration in the Arctic on Thursday, dismissing a lawsuit by environmentalists who had said it violated people's right to a healthy environment.

The case, brought by Greenpeace and the Nature and Youth Group, had argued that a 2015 oil licensing round in the Arctic that gave awards to Statoil, Chevron and others violated Norway's constitution.

But the Oslo district court said the government's oil and gas plans were acceptable. "The state, represented by the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy, is acquitted," it said.

The court ordered the environmental groups to pay the state's legal costs of 580,000 Norwegian crowns ($71,700). Greenpeace said it would decide whether to appeal within the next two weeks.

Norway is Western Europe's largest producer and exporter of oil and gas and plans to keep pumping for decades despite its support for the 2015 Paris climate accord, which aims to end the fossil fuel era this century.


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