ExxonMobil slowly shedding its "skeptical" skin

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ExxonMobil’s chief spokesman, Kenneth Cohen recently stated that, “Exxon Mobil Corp. never in the past decade doubted the risk from climate change… [and] had simply firmed up, or “evolved,” its understanding of the threat.”

If by firming up the science, Cohen means spending an estimated $23 million on think tanks and associations that have spent the better part of the last decade attacking the scientific evidence for human-induced global warming, then we couldn’t agree more. 

Bowing to public pressure late last year, Exxon announced that it was cutting funding to  these think tanks. However, according to a recent report by Greenpeace, the oil giant spent $2.1 million in 2006 on 41 other think tanks. 

No matter how much Cohen wants ExxonMobil to be green, it is going to have to show true leadership on the environment and a first big (and oh so obvious) step would be to end funding the think tank war on global warming science. 

Seriously, it’s a couple of million dollars to a handful of organizations that are doing Exxon’s image way more harm than good. How hard of a decision can it really be?  

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Kevin is a contributor and strategic adviser to DeSmogBlog.

He runs the digital marketing agency Spake Media House. Named a “Green Hero” by Rolling Stone Magazine and one of the “Top 50 Tweeters” on climate change and environment issues, Kevin has appeared in major news media outlets around the world for his work on digital campaigning.

Kevin has been involved in the public policy arena in both the United States and Canada for more than a decade. For five years he was the managing editor of DeSmogBlog.com. In this role, Kevin’s research into the “climate denial industry” and the right-wing think tank networks was featured in news media articles around the world. He is most well known for his ground-breaking research into David and Charles Koch’s massive financial investments in the Republican and tea party networks.

Kevin is the first person to be designated a “Certified Expert” on the political and community organizing platform NationBuilder.

Prior to DeSmogBlog, Kevin worked in various political and government roles. He was Senior Advisor to the Minister of State for Multiculturalism and a Special Assistant to the Minister of State for Asia Pacific, Foreign Affairs for the Government of Canada. Kevin also worked in various roles in the British Columbia provincial government in the Office of the Premier and the Ministry of Health.

In 2008 Kevin co-founded a groundbreaking new online election tool called Vote for Environment which was later nominated for a World Summit Award in recognition of the world’s best e-Content and innovative ICT applications.

Kevin moved to Washington, DC in 2010 where he worked for two years as the Director of Online Strategy for Greenpeace USA and has since returned to his hometown of Vancouver, Canada.

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