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Big Oil works hard to deny climate change

| July 18, 2021 1:00 AM

Citizens following climate change research are not surprised that Big Oil hired scientists and engineers in 1958 to research the role burning fossil fuels has on the environment. By 1980 Exxon researchers had 8 papers published in peer-reviewed science journals, including a prediction of how much global warming from carbon dioxide buildup would be 40 years later. In 1980, an Exxon chemist helped invent the lithium battery and won the Nobel Prize in chemistry for the work. Did Exxon build lithium battery factories to facilitate the transition to electric cars? No, they fired him and shut down their energy work and started funding climate deniers.  Most industry scientists during the 1980s and '90s accepted that increased changes in CO2 emissions would affect temperature and precipitation.

Currently over 20 lawsuits attempt to hold the fossil fuel industry responsible for its role in climate change. The industry’s internal documents shows researchers predicted the rising global temperatures with stunning accuracy. The Exxon documents were found at the University of Texas by the Columbia Journalism School and the LA Times in 2015. The lawsuits accuse the industry of aggravating the environmental crisis with decades-long lies and deceit to suppress warnings from their own scientists about the impact of fossil fuels on climate. Sound familiar to the tobacco industry’s downfall after concealing the real dangers of smoking? Summary of recent articles from The Guardian.org.

STEVE ANDERSON

Sagle