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Author Topic: Fossil Fuel Propaganda Modus Operandi  (Read 20569 times)

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September 20, 2021

🐍 Bjorn Lomborg Lies About Warming Saving Lives, Gets Factchecked, Gets Invited by 😈 Fox and The 😈 Wall Street Journal to Repeat His Lies Anyway

On Friday, we talked about how Facebook is doing everything it can to look like it’s taking disinformation seriously, short of actually doing much of anything about it, and especially not the relatively easy action of removing bad actors all together. 

But it’s not just Facebook that seems to delight in ignoring factchecks, which is why — though incredibly valuable — they can’t be relied on as the sum total of a disinformation strategy, particularly not for a company with billions of dollars to spend. 

For example, earlier this month, in response to the IPCC report, the New York Post published an op-ed by Bjorn Lomborg in which he claimed that climate change is saving 166,000 lives a year because fewer people are dying of cold than of heat. 

Well, ClimateFeedback talked to real scientists , including some who Lomborg has cited, and unsurprisingly, finds his claim incorrect and “based on a misinterpretation of a study and interpretation of data that doesn’t support” his conclusions. 

“The issue with Lomborg’s argument,” said Aaron Bernstein of Harvard, “is that he is using cherry-picked data.” A shocker, we know...

And indeed, Lomborg, who has a history of making this argument, cites studies that specifically don’t do the comparison, and ignores the ones that do. Why? Well, probably because, as one such study author, Antonio Gasparrini of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine explained, “in many countries, especially in highly populated tropical areas, the increase in heat-related deaths is much higher than the reduction in cold-related deaths, with an increase in net mortality, especially under more extreme scenarios of global warming. A separate analysis led by other research groups has confirmed these results in both the US and Europe.” 

The ClimateFeedback post also addresses something Lomborg claimed on social media, that the reason why heat deaths have appeared to go up by 54% is that there’s simply more old people, and that population change is behind the results. 

But that too is false, because it turns out that the researchers doing these studies aren’t the idiots that Lomborg takes them for, and do in fact account for those demographic changes. Or, in the words of the University of Gloucestershire’s Philip Staddon, “this is clearly incorrect as all serious academic research already takes account of population growth, demographics and ageing… It sounds like a simplistic analysis was taken… According to the WHO, climate change is causing over 150,000 additional deaths annually, so it would appear [Lomborg] has misread facts and stated more or less the exact opposite of reality.”

But stating the opposite of reality is basically exactly what the Wall Street Journal’s opinion page is for, and sure enough, the morning after ClimateFeedback debunked Lomborg’s claims, there 😈 they were in the Journal’s pages.

Lomborg repeatedly makes the exact false claims that were debunked as “unsupported” and “incorrect,” because the Wall Street Journal is happy to print such unsupported and incorrect claims, and is fine running basically the same content as its fellow Murdoch-owned outlet the New York Post (and even the same content it ran back in 2016, when Lomborg made these same claims and they were again ruled as misleading!).

And to complete the Murdoch Media trifecta, on Friday, Lomborg appeared on Fox News to once more repeat the same exact debunked claims about lives lost to climate change. 

So, as much as we love to factcheck, and appreciate all the time other experts spend on it, when the subjects are allowed to keep repeating the same lies, in the same Murdoch media outlets, year after year, what else needs to happen to make factchecking mean something? 

Besides, you know, kicking liars off social media platforms and for respectable newspapers’  fact-checking teams to work on opinion content as rigorously as they do reported content...
Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart. Ps. 97:11


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September 29, 2021

WSJ Column Ignores WSJ Reporting To Blame Renewables For Fossil Fuels’ Failures

Have you ever heard of the Covid-19 pandemic? Or the UK’s decision to leave the European Union? Of course you have. And of course 😈 deniers have too, but you wouldn’t know it judging by a spate of recent pieces seeking to blame renewables for the fact that it’s fossil fuels that are expensive and unreliable.

At the Washington Times, an op-ed by “🦖 energy attorney” and utility consultant 🦕 Terry Jarrett blamed renewables for the Texas blackout, and the resulting $46 billion it spent on electricity that week, despite the fact that it was the state’s deregulated and gas-heavy grid that drove up prices.
Over at the Koch-funded 🦖 RealClearEnergy, the (ashamed) Koch crony 🐍 Daniel Turner also blamed “energy-rich” Texas’s blackout on renewable energy, because it “is incapable of producing the same amount of energy and cannot withstand the elements.” Not mentioned is the recent federal report that determined the two main causes of the blackout. The first was power plants not being weatherized, and it was mainly the gas plants that froze. The second was that gas transmission systems couldn’t withstand the elements either, so the gas plants that weren’t frozen couldn’t get deliveries. Overall, 60% of the power that cut off was from gas failures. 

You wouldn’t know that by reading the Wall Street Journal’s opinion page, though. They rejected the factual findings of gas’s failures in an editorial last Friday, and on Monday editorial board writer 🦖🎩 Allysia Finley brought a new bogus argument to their pages.

In their never-ending quest to falsely disparage renewables, Finley wrote that “increased global demand has caused the price of coal to triple and the price of natural gas to increase fivefold over the past year.” Hmm, now, what were coal and gas prices like last year, during the global pandemic that shut down travel and business across the planet? Finley doesn’t say, instead continuing with “Europe’s cap-and-trade scheme has pushed prices even higher.”

Ah yes, it’s not that prices are recovering after falling so far during the pandemic that prices went negative, or what Wall Street Journal reporters described as expert opinion that the “short-lived” “surge in coal demand is unique to the pandemic” as well as the fact that when it comes to prices, “the rise is off a low base after an exceptional fall in demand last year.”

And the UK’s issues with importing energy from the EU is all because of Boris Johnson’s totally sincere climate pronouncements, not that whole “Brexit” business that promised to make importing things from the EU more of a hassle.

At least according to the WSJ’s opinion page. Ask it’s fact-checked reporters, and you might find a different story.
Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart. Ps. 97:11


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October 5, 2021

Green Washing Ads Can't Remove 🦕 Oil Stain from 😈 Fossil Fuel Investors

A new analysis covered at DeSmog looked at over 3,000 social media ads and posts from six major European fossil fuel companies between December of 2019 through April of 2021, and found 63% painted the climate-destroying company as climate-friendly.

“Half of the companies analysed,” wrote Rachel Sherrington, “dedicated over 80 percent of their posts to highlighting their involvement in green and climate-friendly work such as building up more renewable energy capacity. Green investments, however, make up just 12 percent of these companies’ portfolios on average based on publicly available figures."

The biggest discrepancy was found at Preem, where 81% of their promos are green, while 98% of their business is dirty fuels. Shell was next, with 90% of its investments going into fossil fuels, while 81% of its promotional materials focusing on its “green” energy generally and 13% on renewables specifically, which comprise just 1% of its energy investments

One of the 😈 newest strategies, borne out in the ads, is to paint itself as what disinfo expert Geoffrey Supran has termed a “fossil fuel savior” framing, that “helps defend the status quo” with “silver-bullet techno-fixes that aren’t yet commercially viable.” 

Overall, 20% of the ads were about the companies' climate plans, and another 10% about sustainable transportation. Only 13% of ads were about conventional gas and oil products, and only 3% touted the benefits of fossil fuels. The rest were a mix of ads about renewable energy generally, solar, or gas as a green fuel (4% each), a circular economy, bioenergy, hydrogen, efficiency (3% each), climate policy, wind, and carbon capture (2%), and hydro and nature-based climate solutions (1% each).

Having moved from questioning the reality of climate change to championing itself as the solution, the industry is “positioning itself, astoundingly, as a climate leader,” Loyola University professor Karen Sokol told DeSmog. Sokol believes the phrase “'greenwashing’ tends to minimize the wrongful nature of the industry’s messaging. It is a systematic deceptive marketing campaign designed to interfere with the solution that is necessary to respond to the climate emergency: stopping fossil fuel production.”

By promoting things like hydrogen or carbon capture from power plants, they’re not just promoting false solutions that wouldn’t address the problem, Sokol said, but instead “would accelerate the climate crisis, perpetuate existing and create new harms that disproportionately impact communities who have long been on the frontlines of fossil fuel infrastructure.”   

Sokol also told DeSmog that “the industry’s ‘climate and society friendly’ messaging is nothing new” it is instead “just the latest instantiation of its disinformation campaign designed to allow it to continue profiting from deadly and planet-destroying fossil fuel products.”

There’s that discrepancy, and then there’s the fact that only 16% of the ads focused on fossil fuels at all, a small figure given that the companies are still investing 70-98% their resources into 🦕 fossil fuels.

Most of the posts weren’t even ads though, technically they were just organic content. Only 18 percent were designated as ads in Facebook, so while the YouTube and Twitter disclosures might increase that percentage, the reality is that there is little to no difference between a company’s advertisements and their social media posts.

In other words, while deniers love to cast themselves as free speech martyrs, the reality is that there’s already a well-known term for climate denial, disinformation, and greenwashing, whether in content they pay for or post regularly to the platforms: false advertising.

The 🦕🦖 Hydrocarbon 👹 Hellspawn Fossil Fuelers DID THE Clean Energy Inventions suppressing, Climate Trashing, Government corrupting, human health depleting CRIME. Since they have ALWAYS BEEN liars and conscience free crooks 🦀, they are trying to AVOID DOING THE TIME or PAYING THE FINE!  Don't let them get away with it! Pass it on! 
« Last Edit: October 05, 2021, 09:02:22 pm by AGelbert »
Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart. Ps. 97:11


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October  14, 2021

Will Big Oil’s Slippery Six CEOs Honor Their Intentions To Testify to Congress About Climate Disinfo

Remember in 2018, when the Washington Post hired 🦕 Mark Lasswell from the 🎩👿 Wall Street Journal to edit the opinion page? And we were concerned that maybe he’d bring climate denial along with him? Well yesterday the Washington Post published a third 🐘 conservative columnists’ praise for Steven Koonin. Contributor Mich Daniels, president of Purdue University and barely not the worst recent Indiana governor, wrote that even if Koonin’s “contrarian views might be completely wrong,” the critical response to his (completely wrong) book is proof that it’s actually important.

By that logic, Daniels should be platforming people who tout horse deworming paste as a smarter choice than vaccines, or holocaust deniers, flat earthers, and any number of other people who need to be told loudly and frequently that they are wrong. But he’s not, because it’s not really about intellectual honesty and integrity in science. It’s about propaganda 😈 designed to undercut the need for climate policy.

But much like how the WSJ’s opinion page is several orders of stupid worse than its reporters, over at the news side of the Washington Post, new hire Maxine Joselow is proving her worth with a great interview with California Democratic Rep. Ro Khanna confirming that at least most of the six fossil fuel executives invited to testify on climate disinformation intend to show up for the October 28th hearing!

Last month Rep. Khanna and the Oversight Committee chair Rep Carolyn Maloney sent letters to 👉 ExxonMobil, BP, Chevron, Shell, API and Chamber of Commerce leadership, but given how we know executives prefer to send “whipping boys” to testify in their place, expectations were low that they would show up unless compelled by subpoena.

Apparently just the threat was enough, as representatives of each group offered assurances to Joselow that they intend to show without being legally required by subpoena. While this is certainly encouraging, we couldn’t help but notice that none of them actually said they would be there, but instead offered carefully crafted replies that they intend to go.

Joselow described BP’s statement as that its President “plans to testify,” similar to the direct quote from the Chamber of Commerce’s spokesperson that its CEO Suzanne Clark “plans to participate in the hearing.” 

API’s spokesperson reiterated that the organization “welcomes the opportunity to testify,” while Chevron said it “is committed to participating” and Joselow wrote that “Shell and Exxon confirmed via email they were cooperating with the investigation.”

Politico’s Ben LeFebvre got similarly evasive sort-of answers from Chevron and Exxon, who didn’t commit to sending anyone but instead said they are “working with committee staff on details” (Chevron) and “continue to communicate with committee staff” (Exxon). The Oversight committee told him, though, that they “expect each of the executives we invited to appear before our Committee and testify under oath.”

Maybe it’s just because we’re jaded by things like [b]Chevron’s[/b] empty “aspirations” to be carbon neutral, but it sure seems like each one is saying just enough to avoid getting subpoenaed right now, only to slow walk the proces and/or suddenly have a conflict when the big day comes. That way they won’t have to answer for their disinformation, and will have at least temporarily ducked a legally binding subpoena.

After all, the whole reason they’re being called to testify in the first place is their company’s history of deception and denial. For a nice refresher, the Climate Accountability Institute has a great website putting everything about the “Slippery Six” in one place, so you can easily see what each of these players has done to spread climate disinformation.

If even that seems like too much, there’s also a “Smoking Gun” page with all the decades-old documents laying out how they knew about their products climate impacts, and then lied about them.

They may well be telling the truth now though, and really are going to show up to explain to Congress, and the public, about how and why they lied to us for years. 

But if we were Reps. Khanna and Maloney, we might start getting those subpoenas ready, just in case.

The 🦕🦖 Hydrocarbon 👹 Hellspawn Fossil Fuelers DID THE Clean Energy Inventions suppressing, Climate Trashing, Government corrupting, human health depleting CRIME. Since they have ALWAYS BEEN liars and conscience free crooks 🦀, they are trying to AVOID DOING THE TIME or PAYING THE FINE!  Don't let them get away with it! Pass it on! 
Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart. Ps. 97:11


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