Wednesday, September 19, 2018

"Shell and Exxon's secret 1980s climate change warnings," and The Yes Men

Today at The Guardian Benjamin Franta wrote in an article "Shell and Exxon's secret 1980s climate change warnings," "Looking on the bright side, [Shell] expressed its confidence that 'this problem is not as significant to mankind as a nuclear holocaust or world famine.' [par break]  The documents make for frightening reading. And the effect is all the more chilling in view of the oil giants’ refusal to warn the public about the damage that their own researchers predicted. Shell’s report, marked 'confidential,' was first disclosed by a Dutch news organization earlier this year. Exxon’s study was not intended for external distribution, either; it was leaked in 2015. [par break] Nor did the companies ever take responsibility for their products. In Shell’s study, the firm argued that the 'main burden' of addressing climate change rests not with the energy industry, but with governments and consumers. That argument might have made sense if oil executives, including those from Exxon and Shell, had not later lied about climate change and actively prevented governments from enacting clean-energy policies."

I enjoyed The Yes Men's parody of Shell below, as well as their entire film. Some may think comedy is inappropriate given the serious nature of abrupt climate change.  I am reminded of Thomas Merton's words in "Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander" republished in the last issue of The Analog Sea Review, AN OFFLINE JOURNAL I mentioned below."

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