Greenpeace has filed court documents saying a lawsuit against it is an attempt to silence its criticism of a forestry company’s harvesting practices.
“Greenpeace states that the Plaintiffs’ claims for defamation and interference with economic relations have no merit and in fact are being made to harass, intimidate and silence Greenpeace,” the environmental group said in a statement of defense filed Thursday. The papers were filed in response to a defamation suit brought against it last year by Montreal-based Resolute Forest Products.
Resolute brought the case in 2013 after Greenpeace accused it of building roads and cutting trees in regions of Quebec it had promised it would stay out of under the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement, an agreement on forest preservation and harvesting signed by environmental groups and Canada’s main forestry companies.
Greenpeace later retracted allegations it had made about road building, but Resolute accuses the group of repeating those charges nonetheless.
Resolute also accuses Greenpeace of falsely claiming it had mishandled workers’ pensions, and that the group mischaracterized the amount of recycled fiber in Resolute products. Those claims were circulated to Resolute’s customers and at its annual general meeting. The company alleges they hurt its reputation and cost it a coveted eco-friendly certification.