Energy giants spent $1bn on climate lobbying, PR since Paris: watchdog

Oil extraction [image credit: ewg.org]

It would be optimistic to expect any business to willingly cave in to pressure to become less successful, or let attempts to demonize it go unchallenged, especially for the sake of shaky climate theories. As long as the demand for their products is there, so will they be. World demand for oil is on the rise, regardless of those who wish otherwise.

The five largest publicly listed oil and gas majors have spent $1 billion since the 2015 Paris climate deal on public relations or lobbying that is “overwhelmingly in conflict” with the landmark accord’s goals, a watchdog said Friday.

Despite outwardly committing to support the Paris agreement and its aim to limit global temperature rises, ExxonMobil, Shell, Chevron, BP and Total spend a total of $200 million a year on efforts “to operate and expand fossil fuel operations,” according to InfluenceMap, a pro-transparency monitor.

Two of the companies—Shell and Chevron—said they rejected the watchdog’s findings, reports Phys.org.

“The fossil fuel sector has ramped up a quite strategic programme of influencing the climate agenda,” InfluenceMap Executive Director Dylan Tanner told AFP.

“It’s a continuum of activity from their lobby trade groups attacking the details of regulations, controlling them all the way up, to controlling the way the media thinks about the oil majors and climate.”

The report comes as oil and gas giants are under increasing pressure from shareholders to come clean over how greener lawmaking will impact their business models.

As planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions hit their highest levels in human history in 2018, the five companies racked up total profits of $55 billion.

At the same time, the International Panel on Climate Change—composed of the world’s leading climate scientists—issued a call for a radical drawdown in fossil fuel use in order to hit the 1.5C (2.7 Fahrenheit) cap laid out in the Paris accord.

Full report here.

via Tallbloke’s Talkshop

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March 22, 2019 at 04:30AM

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