Exxon Mobil accuses the Rockefellers of a climate conspiracy

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http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/21/science/exxon-mobil-rockefellers-climate-change.html?_r= 1

Exxon Mobil, under fire over its past efforts to undercut climate science, is accusing the Rockefeller family of masterminding a conspiracy against it. Yes, that Rockefeller family.

The company, which has been accused of scheming to pay surrogates to deny the threat of climate change, is trying to turn the tables by calling its opponents the real conspirators. It is fighting state attorneys general, journalists and environmental groups in an all-out campaign to defend its image.

But the oil and gas giant has directed some of its fiercest fire at the descendants of John D. Rockefeller, who in 1870 founded Standard Oil, the company that became Exxon Mobil. Rockefeller family charities, longtime backers of environmental causes, have supported much of the research and reporting that has called the company to account for its climate policies, and Exxon Mobil is crying foul.

The pressure on the company is intense. Journalists have published exposés of the company’s research into climate change, including actions it took to incorporate climate projections into its exploration plans while playing down the threat. Such reporting projects, financed in part by Rockefeller family charities, included last year’s work byInside Climate News and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, which published its results with The Los Angeles Times. The findings have been boiled down to the popular Twitter shorthand#ExxonKnew.

Exxon Mobil, in public statements, court filings and thick dossiers on the company’s opponents, says it is the target of a well-funded and politically motivated conspiracy to harm its core business.

Yet where Exxon Mobil and its allies see a tangled conspiracy, members of the Rockefeller family see an effort to use the vast wealth generated by fossil fuels to combat the damage done by fossil fuels.

Now the family has taken the unusual step of going public to state its case in a rare interview and in a two-part essay in The New York Review of Books that lays out in detail Exxon Mobil’s research and funding of climate denial. David Kaiser, an author of the essay and a fifth-generation Rockefeller, said dryly, “The family generally doesn’t do public things in this way.”

He said he was aware that the “obvious historical irony of the fact that we are Rockefellers doing this would attract additional attention to the story — and we want attention to the story, because we think it will make clear to the public that the so-called debate over climate science has been a fake one, artificially manufactured, and a basically dishonest one from the beginning.”

State attorneys general, beginning last year with Eric T. Schneiderman of New York, began conducting fraud investigations that focus on whether the company’s decades-long research into climate change, and the likelihood that energy companies will not be able to exploit all of their fossil fuel reserves, makes recent valuation of those reserves questionable. The federal Securities and Exchange Commission has launched its own investigation of the company’s accounting of reserves.

Exxon Mobil says it has recognized the threat of climate change and the need to fight it for more than a decade; the company says it stopped funding the organizations that promote climate denial in the mid-2000s. It has also argued that its early research has been mischaracterized.

The company is attacking the role of the Rockefeller family in encouraging, and in some cases bankrolling, the investigations and campaigns against it. Both journalism organizations that investigated the company were financed, at least in part, by Rockefeller philanthropies, though the organizations say that their donors have no control over what they write.

The Rockefeller funds have also provided support to groups like Greenpeace and 350.org that have investigated and criticized the company.

A conference in January to discuss activism and education efforts surrounding Exxon Mobil’s climate work was held at the offices shared by two Rockefeller family funds. One potential subject of discussionsuggested by a participant was “to establish in public’s mind that Exxon is a corrupt institution that has pushed humanity (and all creation) toward climate chaos and grave harm.”

Alan Jeffers, an Exxon Mobil spokesman, said in an interview, “At every turn, as we saw the company coming under attack, there was a link back to either the Rockefeller Brothers Fund or the Rockefeller Family Fund.”

The two philanthropies have announced that they are divesting themselves of fossil fuels. When the family fund made its announcement in March, it denounced Exxon Mobil’s “morally reprehensible conduct” on climate change.

Mr. Jeffers responded, “It’s not surprising that they’re divesting from the company since they’re already funding a conspiracy against us.”

The company and its allies have turned up the heat on its founding family and other opponents.

Industry-backed policy groups like Energy in Depth generate stories that attack the family and its philanthropy. Their charges are echoed in conservative news outlets like The Wall Street Journal’s opinion pageand The Daily Caller. Breitbart News has called the collaboration among environmental groups to urge the investigation of Exxon a “RICO conspiracy,” using the acronym for the federal racketeering law, and the industry-oriented site Natural Gas Now published an article declaring, “It’s time to RICO the Rockefellers.”

The company’s allies offer journalists what political operatives refer to as opposition research, including court records and favorable articles (as do activist groups opposing Exxon Mobil).

Exxon Mobil has also pulled the Rockefeller philanthropies into its legal battles against the attorneys general investigating it, sending the groups a subpoena demanding documents and communications related to their activism.

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thanks to maria for the link..

there is no loyalty among thieves..

“He said he was aware that the “obvious historical irony of the fact that we are Rockefellers doing this would attract additional attention to the story — and we want attention to the story, because we think it will make clear to the public that the so-called debate over climate science has been a fake one, artificially manufactured, and a basically dishonest one from the beginning.”

401

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~ by seeker401 on December 30, 2016.

2 Responses to “Exxon Mobil accuses the Rockefellers of a climate conspiracy”

  1. […] via Exxon Mobil accuses the Rockefellers of a climate conspiracy — Follow The Money […]

  2. Reblogged this on The Most Revolutionary Act and commented:
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    As always, there’s no loyalty among theives.

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