Exxon Knew. Was that Shell’s Game, too?
February 19, 2016
None dare call it conspiracy. Till now.
Oil giant Exxon planned their facilities with climate change and sea level rise in mind, even as they were funding efforts to cast doubt on the science of climate change.
Congress-people asking if Shell Oil did the same thing.
A Southern California congressman and two other representatives are calling for an investigation of Shell Oil over whether it deceived the public on climate change at the same time it was preparing its business operations for rising sea levels.
In a Feb. 17 letter to U.S. Atty. Gen. Loretta Lynch, the three members of Congress said growing evidence suggests there may have been “a conspiracy between Shell, Exxon Mobil and potentially other companies in the fossil fuel industry.”
Their letter cites an investigation published by the Los Angeles Times that reported that in 1989 Shell Oil announced it was redesigning a long-term, $3-billion natural gas platform in the North Sea to deal with rising sea levels from global warming. Despite this and other incidents, the congressmen noted, “Shell apparently decided to fund climate deniers.”
California Atty. Gen. Kamala D. Harris (as well as New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman) is investigating whether Exxon Mobil repeatedly lied to the public and its shareholders about the risk to its business from climate change — and whether such actions could amount to securities fraud and violations of environmental laws. New York’s attorney general also is investigating the oil company as a result of the published reports.
“As members of the Oversight Committee, we now ask that Shell also be investigated for intentionally hiding the truth about climate change and embarking on a massive campaign of denial and disinformation,” the letter states.
Shell spokesman Curtis Smith responded to the letter by saying that “Shell’s public position on climate change and the challenge CO2 poses is well known and can be documented for over a decade through publications such as the Shell Annual Report and the Shell Sustainability Report. Recognizing the climate challenge and the role energy has in enabling a decent quality of life, we continue to pursue and advance constructive dialogue on this topic as the challenge is one for all of society.”