Breaking: Investigative reports reveal that Exxon knew the truth about climate change as far back as 1978 and lied to cover it up. Sign here to tell the Department of Justice to prosecute ExxonMobil for defrauding the American public.
Bombshell investigative reports reveal that Exxon knew as early as 1978 that our climate was being disrupted and that their product was responsible.1 But instead of taking action that could have saved lives and protected our planet, Exxon spent two decades and millions of dollars lying about what they knew in an effort to slow action and protect their profits.
They even said, in 1982, "Mitigation of the greenhouse effect would require major reductions in fossil fuel combustion ... There is concern among some scientific groups that once the effects are measurable, they might not be reversible ... There are some potentially catastrophic events that must be considered."
If you agree that it's time for President Obama and his top cop, Attorney General Loretta Lynch, to prosecute ExxonMobil, sign here:
Exxon's lies sound a lot like how the tobacco industry knew the facts about smoking's addictive and destructive impact on public health, but lied about it to Congress, the public and the courts.2 And when the Department of Justice (DOJ) learned about those misdeeds, they took action by prosecuting the tobacco companies under something called the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).
Simply put, RICO says that no company can knowingly mislead the public in an attempt to protect profits at the expense of our health, safety and national interest. The tobacco industry had to pay $200 billion in 1998 to settle just such a suit with the DOJ. And there's plenty of evidence that Exxon has committed the same kind of crime:
- Between 1978 to 1986, Exxon spent big bucks researching the impacts and causes of climate change, even collaborating with Columbia University and the U.S. Department of Energy.
- To bury the truth, Exxon then hired many of the very same PR consultants and junk scientists as Big Tobacco to mislead the public.3
- Exxon understood the data perfectly, and even used it to make big investments in arctic oil drilling (which got easier as the polar ice caps melted) and to shore up their pipelines and drilling rigs against melting permafrost and rising oceans.4
- But Exxon didn't disclose those risks or impacts to the public or even their investors. Just last year they published a report saying "we do not anticipate society being able to supplant traditional carbon-based forms of energy with other energy forms, such as renewables..."5
There's simply no excuse, and thanks to the great reporting, there's no longer anywhere for Exxon to hide. Sign here to tell President Obama and his DOJ to prosecute ExxonMobil to the fullest extent of the law.
Drew and the take-down-Exxon crew at Environmental Action
1 - Neela Banerjee, Lisa Song and David Hasemyer, Exxon: The Road Not Taken, InsideClimate News, September 21, 2015
2 - Greg Laden, Letter To President Obama: Investigate Deniers Under RICO, HUffington Post, September 19, 2015
3 - Naomi Oreskes, Exxon’s Climate Concealment, the New York Times, October 9, 2015
4 - Sara Jerving, Katie Jennings, Masako Melissa Hirsch and Susanne Rust, What Exxon knew about the Earth's melting Arctic, LA Times, October 9, 2015
5 - ExxonMobil reports to shareholders on managing climate risk, ExxonMobil, March 31, 2014