Tag Archives: #ExxonKnew

Supreme Court Blocks ExxonMobil’s Effort to Conceal Decades of Documents in Probe of Oil Giant’s Climate Deception

The high court’s ruling means the company must hand over records to the Massachusetts attorney general for her ongoing investigation

By Jessica Corbett, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 1-7-2019

Photo: @NextGen_NH/Twitter

In a win for climate campaigners and Massachusetts’ Democratic Attorney General Maura Healey on Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected ExxonMobil’s attempt to block Healey’s demand for documents related to her state’s ongoing investigation into allegations that one of the world’s largest oil and gas corporations deceived the public and investors for decades about how fossil fuels drive global warming.

“The public deserves answers from this company about what it knew about the impacts of burning fossil fuels, and when,” Healey said, responding on Twitter to the ruling. This victory, she added, “clears the way for our office to investigate Exxon’s conduct toward consumers and investors.” Continue reading

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Ditching Diplomatic Duties, Tillerson Accepts Lifetime Achievement Award From Oil Industry

Top US diplomat traveled to Turkey where he was honored for serving as CEO of fossil fuel giant ExxonMobil

By Jessica Corbett, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 7-10-2017

Rex Tillerson. Photo: premier.gov.ru [CC BY 4.0) , via Wikimedia Commons

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson—a former CEO of the world’s largest oil company—is under fire on Monday for setting aside his diplomatic duties on Sunday to accept a lifetime achievement award from the World Petroleum Congress is Istanbul, Turkey.

“Secretary Tillerson’s warped notion that it’s appropriate to attend and accept an award at an oil industry conference proves yet again that he has no idea how to be the United States’ chief diplomat,” said Greenpeace USA senior climate campaigner Naomi Ages. Continue reading

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Tillerson Called Out for ‘Lying About Climate’ During Confirmation Hearing

‘Listening to his hearing, it would be easier to conclude Tillerson is under criminal investigation than under consideration for secretary of state’

By Deirdre Fulton, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 1-11-2017

Joined by 15 T-Rex dinosaurs, more than 200 people demonstrated mass public opposition to the appointment of former ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson for secretary of state, urging senators to #RejectRex. (Photo: Eman Mohammed/350.org)

At his senate confirmation hearing on Wednesday, U.S. secretary of state nominee Rex Tillerson on Wednesday dodged questions about ExxonMobil’s long history of denying climate science, lending credence to claims his tenure would be a disaster for the planet.

When pressed by Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) about the major charges unearthed by the ongoing ExxonKnew investigation—namely, that the oil company hid evidence going back to the 1970s of how the burning of fossil fuels impacts the climate, and funded misinformation campaigns to spread skepticism about growing scientific consensus—former Exxon CEO Tillerson “essentially pled the fifth,” said Oil Change International executive director Stephen Kretzmann. Continue reading

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Latest Attempt to Take Down ExxonKnew Denounced as ‘Buffoonery’

“This hearing should take on ExxonMobil as a corporate sponsor—they’re certainly the money and influence behind it”

Written by Deirdre Fulton, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 8-31-2016.

With Texas Republican Lamar Smith at the helm, the House Committee on Space, Science and Technology has been accused of "abuse of power" in Exxon's interest. (Photo: NASA/flickr/cc)

With Texas Republican Lamar Smith at the helm, the House Committee on Space, Science and Technology has been accused of “abuse of power” in Exxon’s interest. (Photo: NASA/flickr/cc)

Marking an escalation in the fight over ExxonMobil and climate change, U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), has scheduled a hearing for September 14 to probe the ongoing investigation by attorneys general into whether the oil giant misled the public and investors on global warming.

Smith chairs the House Committee on Space, Science and Technology, which last month issued subpoenas to the attorneys general of Massachusetts and New York, as well as a slew of environmental groups over ExxonKnew. Each of those entities has refused to comply with the subpoenas, claiming they represent not only congressional overreach but also the fossil fuels industry’s undue influence over policymakers.

In turn, the hearing will ostensibly “explore the validity of the committee’s current inquiry in the context of Congress’ broad oversight authority,” as well as potential “recourse for failure to comply,” according to a notice posted Tuesday.

According to InsideClimate News:

Among the Republican majority witnesses to testify at the Sept. 14 hearing will be two law professors with connections to think tanks funded by the fossil fuel industry and who have been critical of the attorneys general. The third is a liberal law scholar and professor who has frequently testified before Congress. The Democrats on the committee have yet to name a minority witness.

One witness, Florida International University College of Law professor Elizabeth Price Foley, recently penned a Wall Street Journal op-ed that called the two attorneys general “utterly wrong” for refusing to comply with the subpoenas, InsideClimate News points out. She is affiliated with the conservative Cato Institute.

Meanwhile, Ronald D. Rotunda, a law professor of at Chapman University’s Dale E. Fowler School of Law who will also testify, “is associated with the Heartland Institute and is a frequent contributor to the organization’s policy blog, which often features writings challenging the scientific consensus on manmade climate change,” InsideClimate Newsreports.

“Maybe instead of this buffoonery, the House Science committee could call on, you know, a scientist, to re-explain the threat of climate change and the role of the fossil fuel industry in causing the crisis,” said Jamie Henn, communications director for 350.org, one of the groups to receive a subpoena. “Rep. Smith sounds like he could use a refresher course.”

Perhaps, Henn added, “this hearing should take on ExxonMobil as a corporate sponsor—they’re certainly the money and influence behind it. Rep. Smith has zero authority or cause to subpoena us, the attorneys general, or any other groups looking to uncover the truth about Exxon’s climate lies.”

The latest developments come as conservatives attempt to spin a counter-narrative aimed at undermining the ExxonKnew effort.

And on Wednesday, the Competitive Enterprise Institute—which has “routinely disputed that global warming is a problem” and received around $2 million in funding from ExxonMobil from 1995-2005, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists—sued New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman seeking copies of any secrecy agreements related to the ExxonKnew investigation.

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‘Illegitimate’ Request Denied: GOP Gets Middle Finger for #ExxonKnew Ploy

Refusing to submit to House inquiry, environmental groups question whether committee is “operating properly” or just acting out a “partisan effort to protect fossil fuel companies.”

By Lauren McCauley, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 6-1-2016

"If companies publicly denied climate change while knowing all along how dangerous it was, they should be held accountable," said Greenpeace executive director Annie Leonard. (Image: Exxonknew.org)

“If companies publicly denied climate change while knowing all along how dangerous it was, they should be held accountable,” said Greenpeace executive director Annie Leonard. (Image: Exxonknew.org)

Environmental groups that have become targets of a Republican-led effort to insulate ExxonMobil against accusations of fraud and climate science suppression dug in a bit deeper on Wednesday by refusing to submit to a Congressional inquiry on the matter.

As Common Dreams previously reported, House Republicans with the Committee on Space, Science and Technology sent a letter (pdf) on May 18th to 17 attorneys general and eight environmental organizations—including 350.org, Greenpeace, and the Union of Concerned Scientists—claiming their #ExxonKnew effort amounted to a violation of climate deniers’ First Amendment rights and demanding that they submit communications related to state investigations into Exxon Mobil. Continue reading

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