Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and Exxon Mobil Corp. CEO Rex Tillerson shake hands at a signing ceremony of an agreement between state-controlled Russian oil company Rosneft and Exxon Mobil in Tuapse, Russia, in June 2012. Photo: AP

By Kevin Kalhoefer and Andrew Seifter
16 December 2016

(Media Matters) – Several media outlets reporting on President-elect Donald Trump’s selection of Rex Tillerson as secretary of state have uncritically described Tillerson as accepting of climate change and supportive of a carbon tax. But these reports ignored scientifically inaccurate claims Tillerson has made about climate change, Exxon’s continued financial support of groups that deny climate science, inconsistencies by both Tillerson and Exxon on whether they truly support a carbon tax, and fierce opposition to Tillerson’s nomination from leading environmental groups -- not to mention the fact that Exxon is under investigation in several states for possibly violating state laws by deceiving shareholders and the public about climate change. […]

But Harvard and MIT researchers documented that Tillerson repeatedly pushed “Climate Science Misinformation.” As Slate’s Josh Voorhes recently noted, researchers at Harvard and MIT provided extensive documentation showing that Tillerson’s remarks about climate change frequently “raise doubt about the science when there isn’t any.” Indeed, in a document calling on the American Geophysical Union to no longer accept sponsorship from Exxon, the Harvard and MIT researchers demonstrated that Tillerson falsely claimed in 2013 that the temperature record “really hadn’t changed” over the previous decade, and that he made at least five inaccurate remarks in recent years wrongly “seeking to sow doubt about the reliability of climate models.” As The Guardian’s Dana Nuccitelli explained in 2015, global climate models have been “even more accurate than previously thought.”

News Reports Uncritically Portray Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson As Climate Change Advocate

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