Forbes greenwashes ExxonMobil

From Mother Jones magazine in the USA:

ExxonMobil: “Green Company of the Year?”

— By Josh Harkinson | Thu August 27, 2009 1:03 PM PS

Editors know that counterintuitive headlines sell magazines. They also know that making wildly exaggerated claims can damage their credibility. Writing a headline tends to be a balancing act between these two factors. So when you see a magazine like Forbes say that ExxonMobil is “Green Company of the Year,” as it did this month, what it’s really saying is that it’s hurting. With advertising pages way down this year, the magazine feels the need to sell off its long-term credibility with some readers for the short-term gain of boosting page views. That, at least, is my take on what Forbes was thinking. Because there’s simply no way that any serious reporter would wrap Exxon in a shroud of green. …

If that sounds a bit harsh, then consider the truly abysmal nature of Exxon’s broader environmental record:

1. Exxon has a long history of funding groups “whose position on climate change could divert attention” from the need for clean energy, the company went right on funding them.
2. Exxon is a leading opponent of the Waxman-Markey climate bill, the very legislation that would begin to price dirty coal out of the market. In May, the Exxon-funded Heritage Foundation released a wildly exaggerated study claiming that an emissions cap will kill millions of jobs and send gas to $4 a gallon (The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office found middle-class households would pay only $175 a year more in 2020 because of the legislation). And on August 18th, 3,500 energy workers rallied against the climate bill in a Houston demonstration organized by–you guessed it–Exxon and other energy companies, a leaked memo from the American Petroleum Institute reveals.
3. The Exxon Valdez oil spill. See dictionary entry for “environmental genocide.”
4. Exxon is an aggressive player in Canada’s tar sands, the world’s top producer of ultra-dirty oil.
5. The natural gas pumped by Exxon still contributes to climate change. Indeed, natural gas is currently responsible for about 20 percent of US carbon emissions.

See also here.

Big Oil Gets in on Right-Wing Astroturf Game: here.

It was probably only a matter of time, but the oil lobby has taken a page from the anti-health-care-reform manual in an effort to drum up opposition to climate change legislation in Congress: here.

The UN Human Rights Council has been presented with “strong” evidence yesterday linking at least 15 deaths in the Ivory Coast to pollution from a ship chartered by the world’s third-largest private oil and metals trader: here. And here.

Gag on Guardian reporting MP’s Trafigura question lifted: here.

Some days ago Labour MP Paul Farrelly tabled a series of parliamentary questions for written answer. There was nothing unusual about that. It is the daily business of the House of Commons. What was unusual was that until 2:00 p.m. Tuesday afternoon, when a court injunction was lifted, those questions could not be reported by any British news media, although they appeared on the parliamentary web site and had been published on the parliamentary order paper: here.

BBC removes Trafigura story after legal threat: here.

Amazonian natives say they will defend tribal lands from Hunt Oil with “their lives”: here.

Shell greenwashing video: here.

Global warming deniers, cartoon

Toxic Waters: Regulatory Absence Allows Chemical, Coal and Farm Industries to Pollute U.S. Water Supplies: here.

A grassroots organizer has quit the Nature Conservancy to head up grassroots outreach for the oil industry’s biggest trade group, a highly unorthodox career move that has set off nervous ripples in the capital’s green community: here.

BP and Shell face new shareholder revolt over tar sands: here.

A UK government checklist of claims for advertisers will fail to stop cynical greenwash without a legally enforceable framework: here.

Enhanced by Zemanta

8 thoughts on “Forbes greenwashes ExxonMobil

  1. The Senate is preparing to vote on the most important global warming legislation in years, but people like Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, and Newt Gingrich are working hard to kill this legislation with lies and distortions.

    Urge the Senate to pass strong global warming legislation.

    Bob Fertik

    League of Conservation Voters

    Dear Friend,

    We’re about to face the most important global warming vote in years in the Senate.

    The fate of our planet hangs in balance. The Senate must take action.

    Email your Senators

    In the coming weeks Senators will start debating global warming legislation that will determine the fate of our planet.

    But Big Oil and Dirty Coal, along with allies like Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, and Newt Gingrich, are ramping up their efforts to kill this legislation in the Senate. In the first two quarters of 2009, polluting industries have spent nearly $120 million to halt our progress.

    We urgently need your help to build support for this critical bill.

    Send a message to your Senators today asking them to support strong global warming legislation.

    In June, the House of Representatives took a huge step towards jump-starting our economy with clean energy jobs when it passed the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 (ACES).

    But, our victory has left Big Oil and other polluters feeling threatened so they’re using all their resources to sabotage our transition to a clean energy future and keep us dependent on more of the same failed energy policies of the past. At the same time, people like Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh and Newt Gingrich are using the media to spread misinformation about this bill.

    And, a lobbying firm tied to polluting interests posed as minority groups by sending forged letters to members of the House, asking them to oppose the energy bill!

    We must expose the campaign of Big Oil and their cohorts for the fraud that it is, and stop them in their tracks. That’s why your Senators need to hear from constituents like you.

    Click here to write your Senators today and urge them to support even stronger global warming legislation.

    Thank you for helping us make sure the Senate passes the strongest bill possible and puts us on the path to a clean energy economy.


    Gene Karpinski
    President, League of Conservation Voters


  2. Pingback: Oil as a photography subject | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: Big Oil profits up, US workers down | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  4. Pingback: BP destroys the environment | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  5. Pingback: Exxon, Shell plunder Iraqi oil | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  6. Pingback: Merchants of death BAE ‘pinkwashing’ | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  7. Pingback: Donald Trump’s billionaires’ cabinet | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  8. Pingback: BP destroys the environment | Dear Kitty. Some blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.