Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/articles/14473

Posted on 8 May 2012 at 11:51 GMT

Profit hungry 'Big Oil' backs climate change deniers

Stop big business wrecking the environment

While April may have been the wettest April in the UK for 250 years and March was the warmest March ever recorded in the US, top corporations are funding climate change denial. Pete Mason reports.

Overturning records dating back to 1767 is no mean feat. Oxford University's Radcliffe Meteorological Station holds the longest rainfall dataset in the UK, and its records suggest that April broke not only the entire 100 years or so of national records, but may have been the wettest for almost 250 years.

Global temperatures are increasing rapidly as records fall like rain. March 2012 was the warmest March ever recorded in the US since record keeping began in 1895, with over 15,000 daily warm temperature records broken.

Across the country the question will be repeated: Why are we not doing anything about this real-life disaster movie? In the US, whose industrial capitalist class are the chief villains of the plot, a clue surfaced in a recent billboard campaign by the Heartland Institute, a conservative think tank.

Featuring Ted Kaczynski, the infamous Unabomber and Charles Manson, a mass murderer, with further planned billboards to feature Osama bin Laden, the slogan announced: "I still believe in global warming. Do you?"

Kaczynski in fact made no reference to global warming and Manson is not known for any views on climate change, yet defending perhaps the most extreme public expression of climate change denial seen in the US, the Heartland Institute states: "The people who still believe in man-made global warming are mostly on the radical fringe of society.

"This is why the most prominent advocates of global warming aren't scientists. They are murderers, tyrants, and madmen". (http://climateconference.heartland.org/our-billboards/)

None of this is true, of course. So who is behind the Heartlands Institute (which has now pulled its billboard campaign)? In its exposť, the Climate Progress website lists AT&T and General Motors, Microsoft and many other public corporations which have donated money or provided resources to Heartland, "including Eli Lilly & Co, GlaxoSmithKline, Nucor, Pfizer, and Time Warner Cable" (6 May 2012).

These are huge corporations which have governments dangling by a thousand strings. The five biggest oil companies totalled $33 billion in profits in the first three months of this year, and the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) received on average a 55% pay increase in 2010-2011.

The BP CEO received a 300% increase. Exxon paid 13% effective federal tax rate in 2011, ConocoPhillips paid 18% and Chevron paid 19% - still less than you or me.

The doting US Congress voted down a bill which would have blocked $24 billion in tax breaks to Big Oil over the coming decade (Climate Progress, 2 May 2012).

As the global climate situation deteriorates, it injures the fortunes of capitalists themselves, and infighting begins.

Billionaire energy investor T. Boone Pickens publicly attacked the Kock Industries, secretive funders of climate change denial, calling them the biggest deterrent to an energy plan in America: "They have the cheapest natural gas price they've ever had, and they're in the fertilizer business and they're in the chemical business.

"So their margins are huge. ... if you had an [energy] plan, then natural gas prices would come up" (Climate Progress, 3 May 2012).

In other words, big business, and particularly Big Oil, is behind climate change denial, preventing legislative change from compliant governments, and is the reason "we" have not removed carbon-based fuels from our economy.


This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 8 May 2012 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist.


Planning for the planet

How socialism could save the environment

A new book by Pete Dickenson

£9.95
Order from:
Socialist Books, PO Box 24697, London E11 1YD
020 8988 8789 or see: www.leftbooks.co.uk
Cheques payable to Socialist Publications Ltd

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.






Related links:

Global warming:

triangleTories look in wrong place for climate solutions

triangleStop climate change - fight for socialist change

triangleProfit system rapidly destroying environment

triangleExtinction Rebellion

triangleClimate change protest in London on 12.4.19, photo Mary Finch

Climate change:

triangle"I need to get to work! I need to feed my kids!"

triangleTrade unionists discuss climate change

triangleClimate watch

triangleClimate Crisis: Socialist Green New Deal needed

Energy:

triangleBEIS strike

triangleLabour's nationalisation plan: What policies are needed to avert climate catastrophe?

triangleSocialist policies needed to halt climate disaster

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

23/10/19

Socialism

Join us for a festival of ideas

23/10/19

RMT

Interview with Jared Wood - candidate for RMT union executive

23/10/19

South West

Socialists attract support at first Newton Abbot meeting

23/10/19

Basingstoke

Posties speak at Basingstoke Socialist Party public meeting

23/10/19

Barking

Burnt-out Barking residents picket builders' sales day

23/10/19

Tony Mulhearn

Packed labour movement service a fitting farewell to Tony Mulhearn

23/10/19

Derbyshire

Workplace news in brief

23/10/19

NEU

NEU members strike against sixth-form funding cuts

23/10/19

Asda

Asda contracts: Vital that GMB mobilises for industrial action

23/10/19

PCS

Marion Lloyd for PCS union general secretary

23/10/19

Nigeria

Which way forward for the working people and youth of Nigeria?

23/10/19

Socialism

Join the party that dares to fight for socialism

23/10/19

Bradford

Bradford: Workers walk out over council cuts

16/10/19

Postal workers

Massive vote for strike action: - "We're out to win!"

16/10/19

PCS

General secretary election: Marion Lloyd - standing for action on members' pay, jobs, pensions and more

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0784 114 4890

North West 07954 376 096

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


October 2019

September 2019

August 2019

July 2019

June 2019

May 2019

April 2019

March 2019

February 2019

January 2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999