Max Oliva, Associate Director, Social Impact Management
The Union of Concerned Scientists has just released a report which offers the latest in the ExxonMobil disinformation tactics in regards to global warming, comparing it to that which the tobacco industry took decades ago. According to the report, ExxonMobil has funneled nearly $16 million between 1998 and 2005 to a network of 43 advocacy organizations that seek to confuse the public on global warming science.
“ExxonMobil has manufactured uncertainty about the human causes of global warming just as tobacco companies denied their product caused lung cancer,” said Alden Meyer, the Union of Concerned Scientists’ Director of Strategy & Policy. “A modest but effective investment has allowed the oil giant to fuel doubt about global warming to delay government action just as Big Tobacco did for over 40 years.”
Smoke, Mirrors & Hot Air: How ExxonMobil Uses Big Tobacco’s Tactics to “Manufacture Uncertainty” on Climate Change details how the oil company, like the tobacco industry in previous decades, has:
• raised doubts about even the most indisputable scientific evidence
• funded an array of front organizations to create the appearance of a broad platform for a tight-knit group of vocal climate change contrarians who misrepresent peer-reviewed scientific findings
• attempted to portray its opposition to action as a positive quest for “sound science” rather than business self-interest
• used its access to the Bush administration to block federal policies and shape government communications on global warming
A company’s reputation takes decades to build and can easily be destroyed. Is this the case of ExxonMobil? How strong repercussions will these misinformation tactics have in the company, in regards to their employees, consumers, shareholders, congress and society in general?
Read the ExxonMobil Report.
Take action by the USC.


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