Washington, D.C. — Today, during a House Oversight Committee hearing, executives from some of the biggest oil and gas companies in America refused multiple opportunities to tell their chief trade group, the American Petroleum Institute (API), to stop fighting climate and environmental initiatives the executives claim to support. The spectacle continues the long tradition of oil and gas companies using API as a shield to do their dirty work.
New reporting this afternoon indicates that following the testimony, the House Oversight Committee plans to issue subpoenas to Exxon, Chevron, Shell and other top oil companies for “internal documents showing how they fund climate disinformation.”
“Time and again, wealthy oil and gas company executives were given opportunities to tell API to stop bankrolling the fight against climate and environmental initiatives they claim to support, but they refused each and every time,” said Kyle Herrig, president of government watchdog Accountable.US. “These executives spend massive sums of money on feel good ad campaigns designed to convince consumers their oil and gas companies care about our planet, but when push comes to shove, they fund API to do their dirty work and endorse its misinformation campaigns with silence.”
Exxon, Chevron, Shell, and BP America rejected multiple opportunities to denounce API’s anti-climate campaigns, choosing instead to hypocritically support a trade group fighting policies they claim to support:
- Rep. Ro Khanna asked Shell President Gretchen Watkins three times to ask her fellow witness, American Petroleum Institute (API) CEO Mike Sommers, to stop opposing electric vehicles. She repeatedly refused.
- Rep. Khanna went on to pose the same question to Exxon CEO Darren Woods and BP America CEO David Lawler, asking the executives to further justify their support for API as it opposes a methane fee. They refused to tell API to stop its anti-climate agenda.
- Chevron, Exxon, BP, and Shell refused to commit to leaving API if it continued to undermine climate policies or have an independent audit to verify they were not funding climate misinformation.
Read Accountable.US’s full report on the hearing here.
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