16 January, 2007

ExxonMobil Disinformation on Climate Change ...

On January 3 2007 ABC News reported that ExxonMobil withdrew and reissued, within 20 minutes of publication, an amended response to a report about the company by 'The Union of Concerned Scientists' criticising Exxon's funding of disinformation on climate change science.

Exxon's amended response states, "We recognize that the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the Earth's atmosphere poses risks that may prove significant for society and ecosystems…Human activities have contributed to these increased concentrations [of greenhouse gases], mainly through the combustion of fossil fuels for energy use; land use changes [especially deforestation]; and agricultural, animal husbandry and waste-disposal practices…Even with many scientific uncertainties, the risk that greenhouse gas emissions may have serious impacts justifies taking action." What is clear today is that greenhouse gas emissions are one of the factors that contribute to climate change, and that the use of fossil fuels is a major source of these emissions." amongst other issues.

I first came across this in a Newsweek article published on 4 January 2007.

The fact that an oil company like ExxonMobil now recognises climate change and the links thereof to greenhouse gas emissions, together with the recent political developments in the US, makes me think we will see movement on the issue sooner rather than later by the US National Government.

Reading 'The SciGuy's' blog post on the topic and all the comments that respond to that post really start to give one an idea of the complexities of the political and scientific minefield around the climate change and disinformation issue.