teachers

Tue, 2014-02-04 20:29Sharon Kelly
Sharon Kelly's picture

Risks of Fracking Boom Draw Renewed Attention from Investors

A coalition of investors called out five oil and gas companies for failing to measure or reduce risks associated with fracking on Tuesday, singling out companies both large and small for how they’ve handled the myriad risks associated with shale oil and gas extraction.

Shareholders in five companies — ExxonMobil, Chevron, EOG Resources, Occidental Petroleum and Pioneer Resources — filed resolutions objecting to the ways that the companies describe the risks of hydraulic fracturing and their failures to reduce the environmental and social impacts of fracking.

“The damaging impacts of hydraulic fracturing on air, water, and local communities have made the public understandably nervous and resistant to permitting this controversial industrial activity,” said Leslie Samuelrich, President of Green Century Capital Management, which together with the New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, filed the resolution at EOG Resources.

“Companies that fail to demonstrate a public commitment to identifying and mitigating their impacts will fail to earn the public trust,” she added, “and may put shareholder value at risk.”

Four of the five companies – ExxonMobil, Chevron, EOG Resources, and Occidental Petroleum –  received failing scores in a recent report that examined how companies disclosed the impact of fossil fuel extraction and graded their efforts to mitigate risks. Disclosing the Facts: Transparency and Risk in Hydraulic Fracturing Operations focused on 24 companies that use fracking, assessing the ways each handled toxic chemicals, water and waste, air emissions, community impacts, and governance. EOG Resources received a score of 6 out of 32, Chevron a score of 3, ExxonMobil and Occidental Petroleum each got a score of just 2.

That has some investors, including those overseeing New York City’s pension fund, worried.

Tue, 2010-04-27 10:49Kevin Grandia
Kevin Grandia's picture

Unnamed Physicist Sponsors Global Warming Denial Video Targeting High Schoolers

Cassiopeia Project's hardcore global warming denial

Providing high quality educational resources to science classrooms is a noble task, but when those resources include deeply flawed global warming denial material, produced with funding from an anonymous source, red flags ought to go up.  That is the scenario with The Cassiopeia Project’s video suggesting that climate change is bunk.

Cassiopeia was previously known for producing excellent videos exploring complex scientific concepts, but now all of its good work is being compromised by an unscientific and dishonest attack on global warming research.

That has fans of Cassiopeia’s more well-regarded videos flummoxed

Incredibly, three of the twelve sources cited in the global warming video credits are the exact same press release posted in diferent locations and written by Marc Morano while he still worked for Senator James Inhofe (R-OK).  Other sources of information used in the video include the widely-discredited Oregon Petition Project and the Heartland Institute.

Who is behind the Cassiopeia Project? 

Cassiopeia’s website says the individual is “a retired physicist who has considerable means.”  We know Mudbrick Media, based near Mobile, Alabama, produced the videos. The anonymous funder is described in another story about Mudbrick’s productions as “an entrepreneur who wants to keep a low personal profile” and, beyond his interest in climate denial, “wants to explore a new business model for the music industry.” 

Beyond that, the stunning misrepresentations in the global warming video must, for now, speak for themselves.

The video’s tone is argumentative from the start.  The very first line of the video says: “The opinion count stands at 31,000 to 52 but that’s just among scientists in the public eye.” This is confusing; is there a whole army of secret scientists out there who are less in the public eye than the 31,000 mentioned? 

The narrator continues with leading rhetorical questions, baseless jabs at science and many graphs and images with no citations.  It is as if they are trying to present a pursuasive case to a jury of illiterate and bored captives. 

Is that how Cassiopeia now thinks of high school students? 

Subscribe to teachers