Big oil, the industry fueling the huge increase in CO2 we’ve been experiencing throughout this century are now gaslighting us. Apparently climate change is your problem.
As reported in the Rolling Stone, a Harvard study has shown that the oil and gas industry creates systemic problems, then blames us, the consumer.
The story here, is that consumers are always being pressured to make changes to their lives. “[C]limate change wouldn’t exist if we weren’t all such gluttons for fossil fuel energy”, is what we’re always told. The fact is, we’re all trying to live our lives and make the best choices possible, but that isn’t always possible because some technology just isn’t affordable.
This is also rears its head with the latest public outcries against things like plastic straws, where pressure is put on individuals to change their ways while large companies continue to use plastics as they please in pckaging and other areas.
Oil companies have been placing themselves as merely supplying the demand of consumers. In actuality, some of the same scientists who downplayed the health risks of smoking, actually did a similar job for oil companies. The way oil companies talk about climate change and global warming is extremely different when comparing internal and external communications.
A study by Oreskes and Supran studied the words used in close proximity to the words climate change and global warming, discovering that the word “risk” appears next to those words in internal documents, whereas you could find the word “demmand” close to them on public facing material. In this way, public messaging appears to shift responsibility onto consumers, while acknowledging the potential threat internally.
To provide some balance, Exxon spokesman Casey Norton said, “This research is clearly part of a litigation strategy against ExxonMobil and other energy companies.” Inside Climate News go into a bit more detail around lawsuits being filed against oil companies, of which the Oakes and Supran study has been suggested to be a part of. Read more on that here (and no, you don’t need to put in your email address if there’s a popup). Nicholas Kusnetz goes into super detail and you should certainly check that out for more information.