Daily Archives: April 28, 2016

New Documents Reveal Oil Industry Knew of Climate Risks Decades Earlier Than Suspected; Suggest Coordinated Efforts to Foster Skepticism | Center for International Environmental Law

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 13, 2016

Media Contact:
Carroll Muffett, President: cmuffett, 202.742.5772
Amanda Kistler, Communications Manager: akistler, 202.742.5832

New Documents Reveal Oil Industry Knew of Climate Risks Decades Earlier Than Suspected; Suggest Coordinated Efforts to Foster Skepticism

Washington, DC – Hundreds of documents uncovered by the Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL) push back the record of oil industry knowledge on climate change by decades.

The research demonstrates that the oil industry was explicitly warned of climate risks in the 1960s. Significantly, much of this research was carried out as part of a broader industry effort—dating from the 1940s—to use industry-funded research to spur public skepticism of pollution science and environmental regulations.

“We began with three simple, related questions,” says Carroll Muffett, President of CIEL. “What did they know? When did they know it? And what did they do about it? What we found is that they knew a great deal, and they knew it much earlier and with greater certainty than anyone has recognized or that the industry has admitted.”

In 1968, a report commissioned by the oil industry detailed rising levels of CO2 in the atmosphere and warned of potentially catastrophic climate risks. It warned of melting ice caps, rising sea levels, impacts to fisheries and agriculture, and potentially serious degradation of the environment on a worldwide scale.

According to Muffett, ”CIEL’s findings add to the growing body of evidence that the oil industry worked to actively undermine public confidence in climate science and in the need for climate action even as its own knowledge of climate risks was growing.”

Through industry histories and other documents, CIEL traced the genesis of the industry’s collective climate research to a meeting of oil and gas industry executives in Los Angeles in late 1946. Faced with growing public concern about air pollution, the industry embarked on what would become a well-funded, carefully coordinated, multi-decade enterprise of funding scientific research into air pollution issues. Through its aptly-named Smoke and Fumes Committee, the industry not only funded research, but used it to promote public skepticism of environmental science and environmental regulations the industry considered hasty, costly, and potentially unnecessary.

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

Can the Carbonistas Be Sued Like Big Tobacco?


The Big Picture RT

Published on Apr 15, 2016

We now have more evidence proving that the fossil fuel industry knew about global warming decades ago – and covered it up. On Wednesday – the D.C. based Center for International. Environmental Law – released a report that the American Petroleum Institute commissioned way back in the 1960s. That report – which was conducted with help of scientists from Stanford University – is shockingly accurate in its conclusions and predictions. It argues that by using fossil fuels: “…man is now engaged in a vast geophysical experiment with his environment, the earth… [And as a result] significant temperature changes are almost certain to occur by the year 2000.” So – can we sue the fossil industry just like we sued the tobacco industry? Joining Thom is Mike Papantonio – America’s Lawyer and Host of Ring of Fire Radio.

See:

 

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

Great Minds – Seymour Hersh – On the Rise of Bernie Sanders?


The Big Picture RT

Published on Apr 27, 2016

Seymour Hersh, The Killing of Osama bin Laden, joins Thom. For tonight’s Conversations with Great Minds I’m joined by one of America’s most importatn journalists – legendary investigative reporter Seymour Hersh. Mr. Hersh has broken some of the most important stories of the past half century – and his revelations abou the My Lai Massacre and Abu Ghraib prison quite literally changed the course of American and world history. He’s also won numerous awards for his work – including the Pulitzer Prize – and is also the author of a number of books – including his latest “The Killing of Osama Bin Laden” – a deep dive into the real story of the Obama years.

Great Minds/Seymour Hersh – Bin Laden- A Prisoner of War. It Was a Hit…

Seymour Hersh, The Killing of Osama bin Laden, joins Thom. Seymour Hersh, The Killing of Osama bin Laden, joins Thom. For tonight’s Conversations with Great Minds I’m joined by one of America’s most importatn journalists – legendary investigative reporter Seymour Hersh. Mr. Hersh has broken some of the most important stories of the past half century – and his revelations abou the My Lai Massacre and Abu Ghraib prison quite literally changed the course of American and world history. He’s also won numerous awards for his work – including the Pulitzer Prize – and is also the author of a number of books – including his latest “The Killing of Osama Bin Laden” – a deep dive into the real story of the Obama year.

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

The Chernobyl Disaster…What Have We Learned?


The Big Picture RT

Published on Apr 28, 2016

Alexey Yaroshevsky, RT America joins Thom. It’s now been thirty years since the worst nuclear disaster in history. On April 26, 1986 – the reactor of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in the city of Pripyat, Ukraine exploded – sending a massive cloud of radioactive material into the atmosphere. Radiation continued to flowed out of the destroyed plant for 10 straight days – spreading toxic materials for over 77,000 square miles. 31 people died in the ensuing cleanup – and many thousands of other deaths have been connected to the disaster – as have countless cases of cancer. To this day – the area around the Chernobyl plan is surrounded by a 19 square mile exclusion zone – and it will take 20,000 years before it’s safe again for humans to live there. What happened in Chernobyl remains a potent warning about the dangers of atomic power – that the worst really can happen. So – thirty years on – how much closer are we to grappling with that reality?

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
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Nuclear

Resource Rage – Papua New Guinea


Journeyman Pictures

Uploaded on May 31, 2010

The Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea has made a $16bn deal to extract the country’s natural gas. His people have responded with violent protests, which could plunge the troubled nation back into chaos.

“It’s just like raping a woman. They’re going to rape our resources.” The landowners living along the length of the proposed pipeline have been promised huge benefits from the plan to extract gas from the Southern Highlands and export it to Asia. But they don’t believe it and are up in arms: in scenes of chaos fuelled by a legacy of watching promised riches pass them by, they cut down power-lines, wielding guns and blocking roads: “You never listen – I’ll chop you people”. Ironically, most of the people living in the resource-rich Southern Highlands, live without power, without hospitals and without education. The MD of Australian ‘Oil-Search’- which has a 29% stake in the project – agreed that the money the government has received in the past, “have not been seen in resource areas”. Project Operator Exxon Mobil refused to comment. But the Governor of Gulf Province says he’ll sue Exxon for over $2 billion for what he alleges are failings in their environmental impact study. With four dead, the former commander of the PNG Defence Force has confessed to fears that, “we are setting the stage for another Bougainville crisis in the Southern Highlands”.

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

ExxonMobil’s New Guinea Nightmare


The Nation

Published on May 6, 2014

There are some disturbing facts buried in the debris of ExxonMobil’s $19 billion liquefied natural gas project in Papua New Guinea—funded in part by a U.S. government loan. A landslide from an ExxonMobil quarry there killed 27 people in 2012—a disaster ExxonMobil and the PNG government declared to be an act of God. According to interviews with villagers and reports in the blog PNG Watch, Esso Highlands, despite its array of heavy excavating equipment, offered no assistance as the survivors frantically dug through the rubble to find the remains of their loved ones. (ExxonMobil denies this and claims that its subsidiary “provided timely assistance to the response and recovery effort.”) New evidence, however, suggests that Esso Highlands may have had more to do with the landslide than they’re willing to admit—and that the entire project is fueling civil unrest that may be approaching a boiling point.

Read the full story in The Nation: http://thenat.in/1pPKHJJ

A film by Ian T.Shearn and Olivier Pollet

Produced by the Gumption Group with support from the Mailman Foundation, the Nation Institute and the Fund for Investigative Journalism.

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice

Facing the Hard Truths About Energy


Council on Foreign Relations

Uploaded on May 3, 2011

ORIGINALLY RECORDED September 17, 2007

Watch Lee R. Raymond, former chairman and chief executive officer of ExxonMobil Corporation, discuss Facing the Hard Truths About Energy, a report of the National Petroleum Council.

SPEAKER:
Lee R. Raymond, Former Chairman and CEO, ExxonMobil Corporation; Chair, National Petroleum Council
PRESIDER:
John Deutch, Institute Professor, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Global Climate Change
Environment Ethics
Environment Justice