Naomi Oreskes On Exxon’s Decades-Long Doubt Campaign And Big Oil’s Bad Week

The Climate Pod – Jun 5, 2021

#climatechange #exxon #oreskes #shell #merchantsofdoubt Last week, we saw massive news break for some of the world’s biggest fossil fuel companies. ExxonMobil was one of the companies that received backlash for climate inaction and our guest this week, Dr. Naomi Oreskes, has been following the company for a long time. Her recent paper with Dr. Geoffrey Supran, “Rhetoric and frame analysis of ExxonMobil’s climate change communications” looks at the company’s decades-long campaign to sow climate doubt. We discuss their findings and last week’s news. Be sure to subscribe to The Climate Pod YouTube channel! Listen to the full episode of The Climate Pod featuring Dr. Oreskes here: iTunes: https://apple.co/3g7WSPT Spotify: https://spoti.fi/2Rfx8bH

Orestes

Science for society

A dominant public narrative about climate change is that “we are all to blame.” Another is that society must inevitably rely on fossil fuels for the foreseeable future. How did these become conventional wisdom? We show that one source of these arguments is fossil fuel industry propaganda. ExxonMobil advertisements worked to shift responsibility for global warming away from the fossil fuel industry and onto consumers. They also said that climate change was a “risk,” rather than a reality, that renewable energy is unreliable, and that the fossil fuel industry offered meaningful leadership on climate change. We show that much of this rhetoric is similar to that used by the tobacco industry. Our research suggests warning signs that the fossil fuel industry is using the subtle micro-politics of language to downplay its role in the climate crisis and to continue to undermine climate litigation, regulation, and activism.

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