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Fossil Fuels

Fossil Fuel Groups ‘Spent Millions’ On Climate Disinformation During COP27

Fossil fuel-linked groups spent around $4 million on Facebook and Instagram ads that spread false climate claims over the COP27 summit, a new report says. The physical presence of more than 600 fossil fuel lobbyists overshadowed the November conference in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, as world leaders, NGOs and activists gathered in a bid to accelerate global efforts to confront the climate crisis. Analysis out today shows oil and gas interests were also busy online. Climate Action Against Disinformation (CAAD) – the coalition behind the second “Deny, Deceive, Delay” report – has documented how PR companies, front groups and oil majors were actively spreading disinformation in the weeks leading up to and during the summit. Researchers with the coalition’s COP27 Intelligence Unit identified over 3,700 ads sharing false claims on Facebook and Instagram, platforms owned by Meta.

Activists Disrupt ‘Joe Manchin’s’ FERC Meeting

Yesterday BXE rallied in front of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) office in D.C. - greeting staff and commissioners as they came for the monthly commissioners meeting! We then supported a #FrontlinesToFERC press conference- a group of Gulf Coast organizers who spoke on the numerous frontline LNG fights coming before FERC. As the FERC meeting began- 3BXEactivists disrupted the meeting and were hauled out chanting. Four more BXE members that were not allowed into the meeting (due to past disruptions) managed to get into the meeting anyway- yelling "STOP MANCHIN'S FERC" and deploying a banner. A security guard knocked people over, but we kept on yelling as we were kicked out of the building!

New Report Highlights Pesticides’ Overlooked Climate Connection

As chemicals designed to kill insects and weeds, fungi and rodents, pesticides are among the most toxic and damaging substances on the planet. Their harmful impacts on human and ecosystem health are generally well understood. What receives far less attention, however, is the climate impact of these agrochemicals. Not only do pesticides directly contribute to the climate crisis, but a changing climate is likely to intensify pressure from agricultural pests and decrease plant resiliency, resulting in greater pesticide usage and therefore further greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new report.  This “vicious cycle” of pesticide use fueling climate change, and vice versa, is examined in a report published Tuesday by the advocacy group Pesticide Action Network North America (PANNA). According to PANNA, the assessment is the first in-depth scientific review of the relationship between pesticides and climate change. 

Students Protest Fossil Fuel Involvement In Campus Career Center

Washington - UW students are protesting on campus to demand that the UW Career and Internship Center amend their employer user policy to prohibit companies in the Fossil Fuel industry from recruiting on campus or using the center’s services in any capacity to engage with students. The requested change would deny members of the Fossil Fuel industry a space to recruit students through university networking platforms and career fair events, and also leverage the UW’s agenda-setting power by encouraging similar institutions to follow suit. After several meetings and an attempt to work with the executive director of the UW Career and Internship Center, Briana Randall, student members of the group Institution Climate Action (ICA) were met with strong refusal and told there was “absolutely no way” the career center would adopt such a policy.

UAE Names Oil Company Chief To Head COP28, Worrying Climate Activists

The selection of Sultan Al Jaber — head of the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) — by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to lead this year’s COP28 Climate Change Conference in Dubai has climate activists worried that heavy industry has too big a hand in the worldwide response to the climate crisis. According to his office, Al Jaber — who is the Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology of the UAE, as well as its climate envoy — will assist with building a consensus during the conference’s intergovernmental negotiations and help decide the agenda of the climate summit, reported Reuters. “[Al Jaber] is straddling two worlds. One of climate negotiations where we have to make a giant leap in emissions reductions and financing the move away from fossil fuel emissions; second, as head of Adnoc. UAE wants to be seen to be leading on food, technology, adaptation and potentially innovative finance but how can they carry that off while being fossil fuel polluters?”

300+ Groups Push Biden To End Drilling On Public Lands, Waters

More than 300 environmental and Indigenous rights groups said Wednesday that the Biden administration must take a number of concrete actions to protect the nation's public lands and waters from fossil fuel industry exploitation and bring U.S. policy into line with climate science—and the president's own campaign pledges. In a letter to U.S. Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland, the climate coalition noted that President Joe Biden "made a bold promise to ban new oil and gas leasing on public lands and waters, and within days of taking office issued his Executive Order on Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad."

A Window Into Louisiana’s Continued Embrace Of The Fossil Fuel Industry

Louisiana - I live in South Louisiana on the front lines of the climate crisis and cover the fossil fuel industry and impacts related to the warming planet, so facing gaslighting is a regular occurrence for me. So it resonated with me that Merriam-Webster dictionary chose “gaslighting” as the word of the year. This year saw a 1,740 percent increase in lookups for gaslighting, according to a post by the dictionary company, which defines gaslighting as “the act or practice of grossly misleading someone especially for one’s own advantage.” I would add to that, that gaslighting is a driver of disorientation and mistrust, and a common practice used by the fossil fuel industry — one that DeSmog is committed to countering by drawing connections to those funding misinformation.

The Oil Companies Are The Reason We Don’t Have Climate Policy

The House Oversight Committee has revealed new documentation showing that fossil fuel companies have long been well aware of their industry’s impact on climate disruption, with all of its devastating effects. And rather than respond humanely to human needs, they’ve opted to use every tool in the box, including bold lying, pretend naivete and aggressive misdirection, to continue extracting every last penny that they can. It invites a question: If an investigation falls in the forest and no laws or tax policies or news media approaches are changed by it, does it make a sound? Our next guest’s group collects and shares the receipts on fossil fuel companies’ architecture of deception—not for fun, but for change. Richard Wiles is president of the Center for Climate Integrity.

Environmental Justice Advocates Successfully Block Manchin’s Side Deal

West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin’s so-called dirty side deal was dealt another blow when Democratic leadership declined to attach it to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The legislation, which would have fast-tracked permitting for energy projects and pushed through the controversial Mountain Valley Pipeline, was reportedly supported at first by President Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. However, support wavered after more than 750 frontline communities and environmental justice organizations wrote a letter to Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer Monday opposing the deal. “Manchin’s efforts to tie his dirty deal to any must-pass legislation he can get his hands on are undemocratic and potentially devastating for the planet,” Ariel Moger, political affairs director of Friends of the Earth — one of the letter signatories — said, as The Guardian reported.

The US Is Evading Its Responsibility On Climate Change

Eugene Puryear of BreakThrough News talks about the failure of the United States to fulfill its responsibilities in combating climate change. The US is the largest polluter in historical terms. However, it has failed to provide enough funds or take the necessary steps to meet the goals it has set to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases. Eugene explains the domestic conversation and policy-making around climate change and also talks about how globally, it has taken extremely positions that hurt the interests of the Global South.

Global Climate Talks Spark Action Against Investment Treaties

In advance of the global climate negotiations taking place in Egypt, several countries announced important actions to curb the power of the fossil fuel industry. For decades now, a global web of international investment agreements has given corporations excessive powers to block government policies they don’t like. Through “investor-state dispute settlement” mechanisms, these agreements grant corporations the right to sue governments in unaccountable supranational tribunals, demanding huge payouts in retaliation for actions that might reduce the value of their investments. Corporations are able to file such lawsuits over a wide array of government actions — including actions designed to protect people and the planet.

Fossil Fuel Industry Dupes Media

Shortly after he took office, President Biden announced a goal of building 30 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind by 2030, enough clean energy to power 10 million homes. For the administration, the offshore wind target was a part of a larger strategy of reducing carbon pollution and putting the country on track for net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. But, like many clean energy plans, this one was met with immediate resistance. In August 2021, CBS News reported that Nantucket Residents Against Turbines — or ACK Rats — launched a lawsuit against the administration's offshore wind plans. The Massachusetts-based resident group argued that offshore wind development “poses a threat to the critically endangered North Atlantic Right Whale.”

30+ Media Organizations Call For Windfall Tax On Fossil Fuel Profits

More than 30 media organizations in more than 20 countries have come together with a simple but daring proposal: world leaders should tax big fossil fuel companies to help the most vulnerable nations respond to the climate crisis. The editorial, spearheaded by The Guardian, was published in conjunction with the COP27 UN climate conference in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, and has appeared in an international array of outlets including  Hindu in India, Tempo in Indonesia, the Mail & Guardian in South Africa, Haaretz in Israel, Rolling Stone in the U.S., El Espectador in Colombia, La Repubblica in Italy and Libération in France. “My hope is that in speaking with one voice, we remind people that this is a global crisis, threatening all of us,” head of environment at Guardian News and Media Natalie Hanman said in a Guardian article about the initiative.

Real Challenge At COP27 Is Private Greed Versus Devastation Of All

The COP27 meet is underway at Sharm el-Sheikh. Although the Ukraine War and mid-term elections in the United States shifted our immediate focus away from the battle against global warming, it remains a central concern of our epoch. Reports indicate we are not only failing to meet climate change goals but falling short of the targets by a large margin. Worse, methane greenhouse gas emissions have grown far faster than we knew, and pose as much of a climate change threat as carbon dioxide. Methane lasts for a shorter time in the atmosphere, but seen over a 100-year period, it is a more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. The result is we are almost certain to fail in our target to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees centigrade.

Global Carbon Budget Will Be Spent In Nine Years At Current Rate

The 2022 Global Carbon Budget report is out, and it shows that nations are still emitting beyond their means.  The report, which was released Friday amidst the COP27 UN climate conference in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, found that there is now a 50 percent chance that we will burn past the 1.5 degree Celsius temperature goal in just nine years if greenhouse gas emissions continue at current levels. “This year we see yet another rise in global fossil CO2 emissions, when we need a rapid decline,” study leader Professor Pierre Friedlingstein of Exeter’s Global Systems Institute said in a statement emailed to EcoWatch. “There are some positive signs, but leaders meeting at COP27 will have to take meaningful action if we are to have any chance of limiting global warming close to 1.5°C.
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