Eskimos sue oil and power companies

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Washington, Feb 28 (UNI) An Eskimo village in Alaska has launched a legal challenge against 24 oil and power companies, alleging that their contribution to global warming is threatening the existence of the tiny community.

In a lawsuit filed in District Court for the Northern District of California on Tuesday, the tribe, which is a federally recognised as the Alaska Native village of Kivalina, sued the companies which included nine oil companies and 15 power utilities. The companies include Exxon Mobil and ConocoPhillips, St Louis Business Journal reported.

The village seeks to recover damages from global warming caused by the energy exploration and generating activities of the defendants.

The complaint from the 391 inhabitants says that because of massive ice melting, the village is losing its traditional protection from weather and the village must relocate.

The cost of relocating Kivalina, 625 miles north-west of Anchorage, to the mainland has been estimated at up to millions of dollars. Kivalina is on the tip of a barrier reef on Alaska's northwest coast, about 70 miles north of the Arctic Circle. The tribe depends on salmon fishing as well as subsistence hunting of whale, seal, walrus and caribou.


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