Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Exxon scrambles to contain climate crusade

From:  Politico


A green campaign to make the company pay for climate change is besieging the oil industry and its conservative allies. Editor' Note -  Supporters of Exxon are not Conservatives.  They are NeoCons.
An Exxon sign is pictured. | AP Photo
Activists plan to make a public stand at Exxon’s annual shareholder meeting May 25, where several resolutions intended to force the company into acknowledging the climate threat will come to a vote. | Getty


On Nov. 3, ExxonMobil dispatched its top lobbyists to Capitol Hill on an urgent mission — tamping down an escalating campaign aimed at making the country’s largest oil company pay a legal and political price for its role in warming the planet.
The meeting marked a striking shift in Exxon’s handling of the controversy. The notion of holding oil companies responsible for global warming, in the same way tobacco companies had to pay billions of dollars in damages over the health effects of cigarettes, had long been seen as a quixotic quest led by scruffy, oil-hating extremists. But POLITICO’s interviews with dozens of activists, industry officials and lawmakers suggest that support for a legal crusade against Exxon is growing far beyond the political fringe — and now poses the biggest existential threat the company has faced in decades.

Just five days before the meeting on Capitol Hill, Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton had urged the Justice Department to investigate whether the petroleum giant spent decades deceiving the public about the threat of climate change. State attorneys general had Exxon in their sights as well, preparing to issue subpoenas that would eventually rope in virtually all of Washington’s conservative policy apparatus. A four-year effort by green activists, scientists and lawyers to turn Big Oil’s biggest player into the poster child for climate change — deliberately patterned after the successful campaign to take down tobacco — was shaking the descendant of John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil empire to its core.  MORE