Friday, May 18, 2007

Greenpeace: Exxon still funding climate skeptics

Reuters: Exxon Mobil Corp. gave over $2 million in 2006 to groups Greenpeace called global warming skeptics even as the oil company campaigned to improve its climate-unfriendly image. Nevertheless, Exxon, the world's largest publicly traded company, cut its donations to these groups by more than 40 percent from 2005.

The company still funds about 40 "skeptic groups," according to the report from Greenpeace, but Exxon disputed that many of the organizations were "global warming deniers." The groups listed include: the American Enterprise Institute, the Cato Institute, the Heritage Foundation, and the National Black Chamber of Commerce. Many of them concern themselves with a wide range of issues.

Earlier this year, Exxon said it had stopped funding a handful of groups, including the Competitive Enterprise Institute, that have downplayed the risks of carbon dioxide emissions.

Exxon has argued that its position on global warming has been widely misunderstood and has taken part in industry talks on greenhouse gas emission regulations. "We believe that climate change is a serious issue and that action is warranted now," said Exxon Mobil spokesman Dave Gardner. Gardner said in a statement that the company supports numerous public policy organizations on a variety of topics that do not represent Exxon or speak on its behalf.

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