Demand That Exxon Be Held Accountable For Its Climate-Change Deception

  • by: The Nation
  • target: U.S. Department of Justice

Since the 1990s, Exxon-Mobil has been funding climate change deniers. Exxon has spent millions to sow doubt around the established science, and as a result, we've wasted precious time and energy arguing over whether climate change even exists.

But Exxon knew the truth all along. For over thirty years, Exxon has been aware of the potentially disastrous effects of climate change. One of its own scientists said in an internal memo from 1982 that the effects of human-caused climate change could be "potentially catastrophic" and that they "might not be reversible." A senior researcher said in the early 1990s that warming would clearly affect sea levels and icebergs in the Arctic and even suggested that this would be beneficial to business, as they would "only help lower exploration and development costs."

As Bill McKibben wrote at, "We could have avoided...the last quarter-century of pointless climate debate." And we could have moved a lot faster to wean ourselves off of fossil fuels.

The Nation has been covering this story since it broke and we're angry. There's a growing drumbeat across the country to demand Exxon be held accountable: Attorneys General in New York, California, and across the country have announced investigations and the Department of Justice has asked the FBI to look into the oil giant's deception. But we need to keep up the pressure if we're going to truly hold Exxon accountable.

Please sign the petition and join the call to demand more investigations of Exxon.

To the Department of Justice: 

Reports by the Pulitzer Prize–winning Inside Climate News and the Los Angeles Times reveal that Exxon, now Exxon-Mobil, may have known about the disastrous effects of climate change as early as the late 1970s. However, despite their own scientists' conclusions, Exxon has since contributed millions of dollars to think tanks and organizations that cast doubt on the science of climate change.

If Exxon-Mobil intentionally misled the public, they have done an incredible amount of damage to our ability to deal with a crisis that threatens our very survival. We urge you to heed calls to launch an investigation of Exxon-Mobil.

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