Election week isn’t quite over yet, and neither is the fight to hold Big Oil accountable
We’re here with a reminder of what the results could mean for making polluters pay.
Good morning and HAPPY FRIDAY. We made it to Friday. May you have enough Halloween candy to last you through to the next.
As the New York Times reported last night, votes are still being counted in key states — but Joe Biden “seemed to have an advantage.” While we cling to the edge of our seats and wait for something more final, here’s a reminder about what a Biden administration or four more years with President Trump at the helm could mean for climate accountability. This isn’t the first time EXXONKNEWS has delved into the subject, but after the last three days, we’re proud of you for remembering to put on pants this morning.
Biden has pledged on both the debate stage and in his climate plan to support communities looking to bring the fossil fuel industry to justice. Biden has indicated that he will create an Environmental and Climate Justice Division within the Department of Justice, which he will instruct to “strategically support” climate liability lawsuits against major polluters. That could look like a federal investigation into Big Oil’s legacy of deception, amicus (friend of the court) briefs supporting the plaintiffs, or vetoing policies that would offer blanket immunity from litigation against the industry.
He can — and should — also follow this 10 step Presidential action plan to address the climate emergency within the first ten days of his administration, including action to “investigate and prosecute fossil fuel polluters for the damages they have caused.” Take a look at step #9 for more on that.
Over the last four years, the Trump administration has given handouts to oil and gas executives and supported industry efforts to derail climate lawsuits. We would expect a second Trump term to be more of the same for climate accountability. In the final days on the campaign trail, Trump bragged about being able to hypothetically raise buckets of campaign cash from Exxon in exchange for political favors. For its part, Exxon insists this never happened, but based on its track record, we’ll take that with a grain of salt.
No matter who is sitting at the Resolute Desk on January 21, communities across the country will still need to grapple with how to protect themselves from the impacts of climate change and hold the oil industry accountable. We’ll be reporting back to you on their journey every step of the way.
And now, we have a very exciting announcement to make: it’s our one year EXXONKNEWSiversary!!! 🥳 We’re so honored to have been fighting the good fight with you for a whole year. Next week, after we’ve all had a chance to take a breather, we’ll share with you some of our favorite highlights from over the past 52 weeks. Stay tuned — and stay ready for more, because this fight isn’t close to over yet!
ICYMI News Roundup
Shell tried to gaslight the public, and was promptly ripped a new one by all of climate Twitter — a beautiful thing.
Exxon is still selling algae as the solution to climate change, but experts say that’s not a real option.
The U.S. has formally withdrawn from the Paris Agreement. Biden has promised to rejoin on his first day in office.