"In 1980, a report circulated to a division of one of the biggest coal-burning
utilities in the US warned that “fossil fuel combustion” was rapidly warming
the atmosphere and could cause a “massive extinction of plant and animal
species” along with a “5 to 6-meter rise in sea level” across the world.
Several years later an official at the utility co-chaired a conference where
scientific researchers fretted that “as we continue to exploit the vast
deposits of fossil fuels” it could cause “disruptive climate changes”.
Not only did Southern Company fail to adjust its business model towards cleaner
energy sources, it began paying for print advertisements saying climate change
was not real. “Who told you the earth was warming,” asks one ad from 1991.
Years after receiving multiple credible warnings about the atmospheric damage
caused by its reliance on burning fossil fuels, Southern Company paid over $62m
to organizations with a long record of spreading disinformation about climate
change, a report released today by a fossil fuel watchdog called the Energy and
Policy Institute has found.
Southern has now become the third-largest greenhouse gas polluter in the US due
to its fleet of coal and gas-burning power plants, and until relatively
recently was still denying the science behind global temperature rise. “Do you
think it’s been proven that CO2 is the primary climate control knob?” the
Southern Company CEO, Tom Fanning, was asked on CNBC in 2017. “No, certainly
not,” he replied."
Via Doug Senko.
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics