Wednesday, 7 November 2007

ExxonMobil accused of ‘misleading advertising campaign’

Friends of the Earth (FoE) has just launched an online video called ‘The Exxon Files’, an animated spoof of the X-Files that gives the low-down on ExxonMobil’s funding of climate change deniers. There have long been suspicions, and even evidence of ExxonMobil giving millions of dollars to a variety of thinktanks, scientists and lobbyists to rubbish the science underpinning the human impact on global warming. FoE Europe campaigner, Christine Phol, said: "ExxonMobil invests millions of euros funding thinktanks and lobbyists committed to blocking internationally agreed policies to combat climate change whilst at the same time spending major sums on advertising designed to present itself as an environmentally responsible company." You can help the FoE campaign by watching the video and registering your support for their planned complaint to the Belgian authorities over ExxonMobil adverts at Brussels airport.

The adverts say that ExxonMobil is reducing its greenhouse gas emissions, but the company’s corporate citizenship reports shows an increase of 8.7 million tonnes of CO2 emissions between 2003 and 2006. Paul de Clerck, another FoE Europe campaigner, described the adverts as just one example of ExxonMobil's "deliberately misleading advertising campaign". He went on to say: "The 'greening' of oil giant Exxon is nothing more than a slick public relations exercise… Instead of spending millions (of euros) on manipulating the facts, they should make real efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions." Of course ExxonMobil denied the claims, their spokesperson said: “The recycling of this type of discredited conspiracy theory only diverts attention from the real challenge at hand: how to provide the energy needed to sustain and improve global living standards while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions” ExxonMobil’s response would be laughable if the issue of global warming wasn’t so serious.

[Via The Guardian]

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